Search Query: WWW: Episode 9
Navigating morals and ethics may seem easy, since we’re all raised to know the difference between right and wrong. But everyone makes mistakes even when they have the best of intentions, and a past mistake comes back to haunt our Barro team, threatening to change things forever.
EPISODE 9 RECAP
When none of his arguments work to convince Ta-mi to start a relationship with him despite their differences, Mo-gun finally admits defeat and leaves her at her door. But Ta-mi can’t stand to walk into her dark, empty apartment, and she races to catch up to Mo-gun.
He’s still in the elevator, and when Ta-mi only stares at him, he asks, “Should I stay?” She says a simple, “Yes,” and he kisses her. He pulls back and says that he tried to do this different this time, but he can’t seem to manage it today any more than he could the first night they met.
Ta-mi sighs that she knows Mo-gun doesn’t want to be treated like an amusement park, but she wants to have fun with him, so she invites him into her everyday life. Mo-gun tells her to hurry up and take him inside, but when they get into her apartment and Ta-mi goes to kiss him, he hesitates, looking unsure of himself.
He says that Ta-mi wants him right now, but he asks how she’ll feel tomorrow. She promises that she won’t throw him away again, that’s all he needs to hear.
Ga-kyung is up late when Jin-woo invites her to watch his new film with him. She says she’s not sure when she’ll have time, and Jin-woo accepts her expected rejection. She shows him the proof that Ta-mi gave her that he hired the hacker to put Ta-mi’s name on the real-time ranking list, and admits that she traded Godori for it.
She offers him the paper, but he tells her to keep it. She asks if he trusts her not to use it against him in the future, but Jin-woo just tells her to go ahead, and wishes her goodnight.
Ta-mi wakes up first in the morning, and this time, she takes a moment to appreciate how pretty Mo-gun is when he’s sleeping. She tries to sneak out of bed, but he grabs her wrist and asks sleepily if she’s abandoning him. She says she’s just going to shower, and Mo-gun teases, “Don’t lie, you rarely shower.” HA, I love this running joke.
Ta-mi gives Mo-gun some clothes to wear, and he pouts when she says that a man lent them to her. He tells her never to see that guy again, but Ta-mi says she does plan to see him, and Mo-gun sheepishly realizes that they’re the clothes he lent her when she slept at his place. Hee.
Chairwoman Jang and her entire extended family visit a shrine for her deceased husband’s memorial day, and she’s not shy about the fact that she’s only here for political reasons. When Jin-woo stands to start the service, Chairwoman Jang stops him and says that his uncle will do it from now on, and Jin-woo looks unhappy but he sits obediently.
Ta-mi and Mo-gun sit watching the rain together, and Ta-mi muses that Mo-gun kept his promise to show up every time it rains. He points out that to be fair, he always shows up regardless of the weather, ha.
Ta-mi says that it always made her nervous and scared, and admits that she’s still scared. She mentions how Mo-gun asked her last night if she likes him enough to overcome her fear. She says he’s correct that every relationship ends eventually, and that although she’s anxious about the ending, Mo-gun is the only one she can share this anxiety with.
She asks Mo-gun to be nervous and scared with her, and to appreciate each other as long as this lasts. In answer, Mo-gun hugs Ta-mi tightly. He says that he’s wanted very much to be part of her everyday life, and that he won’t ever leave as long as she never makes him go.
After the service, Jin-woo and Ga-kyung sit at the same table to eat as Jin-woo’s cousin and his new, very young wife. Jin-woo’s cousin mentions how well he’s doing making movies after starting from the very bottom. His wife chirps that she’d assumed Chairwoman Jang bought the business for Jin-woo, and that she thinks Chairwoman Jang was really mean to him today just because he’s not competent enough to run KU Group.
Ga-kyung doesn’t say a word, but after the meal she follows the little twit into the ladies’ room and grabs her by the hair. She tells the girl that she can mess with Ga-kyung but not her husband, and the brat threatens to tattle and get her in trouble with Chairwoman Jang. Ga-kyung tells her to be sure and relay every single detail, and tells the girl that she’s no match for Jin-woo even if he’s been sidelined.
Mo-gun and Ta-mi spend the whole day lying around doing nothing much. Ta-mi asks when Mo-gun got into music, and he says that he and Sun-woo started a band in middle school. His company, Millim Sound, is even named after that short-lived band.
He says that being in the band made him popular, which felt like power, and that he missed that power when he went to high school in Australia and encountered racism for the first time. So he joined another band and the bullying stopped, because he was popular again.
Hyun is working late, and Ji-hwan comes to the office to talk to her. When he shows up, his face is cut up and bleeding like he’s been in a fight. He starts to cry when Hyun asks what happened, and he sobs like his heart is breaking, “Seol-hee is gone. I can’t see Seol-hee’s face anymore!”
Hyun takes him inside to clean him up, and it turns out that all the blood is just makeup from a small role he was filming. She asks why he’s crying, and he explains that Seol-hee was his dog who died a year ago. After her death, he found a picture of the two of them on their last walk on Barro View — aww, so this is what he uses Barro for.
He says he looks at the picture a lot because it reminds him of that day, and how he felt like Seol-hee would be with him forever. There was a veterinarian’s office on that street, and Ji-hwan starts to cry again as he says that if he’d just stopped and gotten Seol-hee a check-up, he might have been able to save her.
He tells Hyun that seeing Seol-hee in the photo helps him remember what she looked like, and that she once lived. But after Barro altered their AI to be better at blurring faces, Seol-hee’s face is now blurry, and Ji-hwan says it feels like she’s being erased.
Hyun explains why the program was changed and Seol-hee’s face was blurred, but she promises that she can fix it so that he can see her face again. Ji-hwan cries again, this time in gratitude, and Hyun sees some more makeup on his wrist. Ji-hwan says that this blood is real — he fell and scraped himself.
The next day at work, Ta-mi tracks down Brian, who’s lounging around playing a ukelele, ha. He’s feeling philosophical, and they get into a discussion about the amazing things technology gives us, like the internet. Brian is interested in AI-composed music, and Ta-mi says that there’s a lot to consider like copyright laws and property rights.
Mo-gun calls to ask if she has a second, so Ta-mi goes outside. As he runs up to her, she yells at him for dressing too sexy again, but he just attack-hugs her, grins that he wanted to show her his sexy look, and runs off again. Silly boy.
Barro’s market shares are still rising — they’re only 1.7% behind Unicon, which is a total of 5.3% since their team was created. Bong-ki gets a message from a reporter friend that Unicon is holding an urgent press conference later, but nobody on Ta-mi’s team knows why.
They watch the press conference, where Ga-kyung apologizes to Unicon’s users for manipulating the real-time keyword rankings to include Bae Ta-mi’s name. She says that Unicon intends to investigate the company that was hired to do this, but she leaves out Jin-woo’s involvement. She’s asked why Ta-mi’s name topped Barro’s charts, too, and she speculates that Barro either didn’t know, or they did know and hid it.
Brian remembers refusing to help Ta-mi clear her name by looking into the company that manipulated the rankings. Ta-mi and Hyun follow him to his office, and Ta-mi takes the blame for all this, explaining that she gave the proof of Jin-woo’s involvement to Ga-kyung in return for Godori. But Brain says it’s his fault for covering up the manipulation and taking away Ta-mi’s right to defend herself.
Ta-mi and Hyun argue that this is a deliberate attack by Unicon and that Brian had no other choice at the time, but he says that he still provided the cause. He asks them not to get the team involved and to let him sort this out.
Hyun can tell that Ta-mi still blames herself and tells her not to, and Ta-mi starts to repeat that she gave Ga-kyung the evidence. But she stops mid-sentence when she sees on the big screen that her name is at the top of the rankings again.
By In-kyung’s reaction, Ga-kyung held the press conference without telling anyone what she was planning. In-kyung is furious, and Ga-kyung avoids her frantically ringing phone by sitting in Ta-mi’s magic no-service spot.
Ta-mi finds her there and asks what she thinks about the fact that people are now saying Unicon is a just company. Ga-kyung says that it’s true Barro concealed the manipulation, but Ta-mi sneers that Ga-kyung deleted keywords about a presidential candidate just because her mother-in-law told her to.
Ta-mi says that Ga-kyung has put her name back at the top of the rankings, and asks how this is any different than what Jin-woo did. She says that having her name on the list made her miserable the first time, but that Ga-kyung doesn’t seem sorry to have done it again.
She says that she won’t sink to Ga-kyung’s level and attack her personally, because she knows how much it hurts. Instead, she vows to show Ga-kyung how low she’s sunk, and when she does, she hopes that Ga-kyung feels shame for what she’s done.
She walks away, and she runs into Mo-gun, who saw the rankings and guessed where she was when he couldn’t reach her. Her eyes well up as she tells him that her relationship with Ga-kyung is really over and can never be repaired, and Mo-gun silently hugs her.
Ta-mi’s name is soon bumped down in the rankings, replaced by keywords about the prime minister’s son and school admissions corruption. She asks the team why the corruption issue is on the list, since it’s been known for a while. Alex says that it’s because the story broke on the same day that Ta-mi and Han Min-kyu both made the rankings, which people believe was manipulated to cover up the corruption scandal.
President Seo calls Chairwoman Jang, angry that Prime Minister Kim’s corruption scandal is trending again and the article he gave her to post on Unicon’s main page isn’t there. He asks how he can trust her when Unicon is holding surprise press conferences, and Chairwoman Jang is put on the defensive and forced to apologize.
She goes to Ga-kyung and accuses her of using Ta-mi to cover up her affair, so that now the Blue House is suffering with the resurgence of Prime Minister Kim’s corruption scandal. She asks why Ga-kyung is suddenly working in her own interests instead of the family, when her dream is to disappear. Ga-kyung says that it’s to achieve that dream.
Hyun shares a strong drink with Brian in his office, as he’s still feeling pretty guilty about putting Ta-mi in this position. Hyun says Ta-mi’s a complicated person, and admits that the team wouldn’t be as effective if she’d been made team leader like she wanted.
Brian just feels even worse, thinking about how much Ta-mi has helped Barro. Hyun offers to write a tear-jerking official statement, but Brian says that’s his specialty. He promises this will be the last issue like this, but Hyun doesn’t seem convinced.
Mo-gun takes Ta-mi to the aquarium, and she says that fish in a tank think that it’s the whole world. Mo-gun says that people are the same, and that he’s starting to like his small world more because of her. Ta-mi sighs that she is, too.
She tells him that she yelled at Ga-kyung and said awful things, but that she ended up getting hurt by her own words. Mo-gun pulls her head onto his shoulder and tells her to stop thinking, and that he brought her here because the people are more interested in the fish than the keyword rankings.
When Ta-mi teases that Mo-gun used to live in a fishtank like this, he grumbles that he’s never coming here again, ha. She checks her phone and sees an interview request, but Mo-gun puts her phone away and offers to let her sleep at his place tonight to avoid the reporters.
Outside Mo-gun’s place, they find Joon-soo’s (ex?) girlfriend Dong-joo waiting for Mo-gun. He suddenly finds himself facing two pairs of accusatory eyes when Dong-joo notices him holding hands with Ta-mi, and Ta-mi asks why Dong-joo is calling him “Mo-gun oppa.” Dong-joo says that she decided she likes Mo-gun because he’s handsome, but Mo-gun tells her that Ta-mi is his girlfriend.
Dong-joo accuses Ta-mi of being a gold-digger, but Mo-gun says that he’s attracted to pretty faces, making Ta-mi blush. He tells Dong-joo to stop being rude and leave, but she says she doesn’t mind dating guys with girlfriends, giving Ta-mi a pointed look.
Ta-mi snaps that she dated Joon-soo twenty freaking years ago, and he wasn’t so bad back then. Mo-gun is cranky when they ditch Dong-joo and go inside, grumping that if Ta-mi likes Joon-soo so much she should go date him instead. Ta-mi isn’t best pleased that Dong-joo knows where Mo-gun lives, but Mo-gun defends that Joon-soo probably told her where he works.
Mo-gun asks if Ta-mi is dating him because he reminds her of Joon-soo when he was young, and Ta-mi snaps that Joon-soo wasn’t her first love, which just fuels Mo-gun’s fire. He complains that Ta-mi initially put him in her fishtank with Joon-soo, and Ta-mi accuses him of flirting with girls in case he wanted to leave her fishtank.
He says with feigned innocence that it’s not his fault he’s so attractive that girls fall for him, so Ta-mi decides they’re sleeping in separate bedrooms. She hilariously touches up her lipstick before asking Mo-gun for some clothes to sleep in, and he notices and takes it as an invitation for a kiss. Ta-mi calls him weird for noticing every little thing, but he just grins and says that her being annoyed is better than sad.
Disarmed, Ta-mi thanks Mo-gun for finding her today, and promises not to go to the school anymore, but he says he’ll just find her whenever she does. He cheerfully wishes her a good night’s sleep in her own room, and Ta-mi chases him to his bedroom, hee.
The next morning, Ji-hwan stops by Hyun’s place to thank her for fixing Seol-hee’s picture, and for getting his job back on What’s Wrong With My Mother-In-Law? Not only did they go with Hyun’s idea of a good twin, but he now has a lot more scenes, and Hyun grabs his hands and jumps up and down in excitement.
She suddenly freezes, then gasps that she can’t think because he’s holding her hands. He lets go, feeling awkward now himself, and Hyun insists that it’s just because she’s his fan. She says that today she’ll be his manager and takes several photos of him, then uses them to create a webpage for him.
As she’s filling in the site, she learns that Ji-hwan graduated high school after only two years. He shyly reveals that he went to a special science school, and Hyun gets excited at the prospect of putting him TV shows to show off his intelligence.
Later that morning, the team discusses the drop in Barro’s shares after Unicon’s press conference. Because they target the younger demographic, users are dropping them because of the hit to their image. They all look alarmed when the board releases a statement that, after confessing that he covered up the keyword manipulation, Brian has resigned as CEO of Barro.
Ta-mi and Hyun try to talk him out of it, and Ta-mi argues that this is what Unicon wants. But Brian says that he can apologize for a personal mistake, but someone has to take responsibility when a company makes a mistake. He thanks Ta-mi and Hyun for wanting him to stay, and he tells Ta-mi to go ahead with her social network idea as his last decision as CEO.
Jin-woo and Ga-kyung discuss Brian’s resignation, which Ga-kyung says she expected, but not this quickly. They agree that it’s not necessarily a good thing for Unicon, since they prefer a familiar enemy. Jin-woo congratulates Ga-kyung, and she asks him to show her his new movie to celebrate.
As she watches, Ga-kyung asks Jin-woo if people really relate to love stories, but he says that he made it so people would mistakenly believe this kind of love actually exists. Ga-kyung says she never expected Jin-woo to make a rom-com, and he replies that he figures he’ll never experience romance in his own life, and Ga-kyung gives him permission to date if he’s lonely.
He thanks Ga-kyung for watching his movie and she reflexively thanks him for inviting her, then backpedals and claims that she wouldn’t have thanked him if he hadn’t thanked her first. Feeling brave, Jin-woo invites Ga-kyung to have dinner after the movie, and she accepts.
But her mother calls, and she and Jin-woo end up hurrying to Chairwoman Jang’s home, where Ga-kyung’s parents are kneeling on the floor in front of her. Ga-kyung’s father bellows angrily for her to get on her knees, too, and Ga-kyung pales as her parents blame themselves not raising her correctly and beg Chairwoman Jang to change her mind about canceling their business contract.
Chairwoman Jang glares at Ga-kyung and orders her to choose her side right now. Ga-kyung remembers this exact situation years ago, when she’d been offered a “choice” to save her parents’ business. Back then, she’d been forced to choose marriage to Jin-woo, but now she hesitates as Chairwoman Jang sneers that she must want to see her family destroyed.
Finally, Ga-kyung says, “Father, just go bankrupt. I’ve done more than enough with this loyalty act for the last ten years. Hand over your company and retire, Father. You should both stop living like slaves for this family. I’m also going to stop.”
Next she addresses her mother: “Mother, you’re right. If I keep living this way, nothing will ever change. So I’m no longer going to live that way. I’m going to divorce Jin-woo.”
I dunno, I’m still not convinced that Ga-kyung is someone I can feel good about just yet. I’m positive she’s going to have a redemption arc, and there are moments when we see her feeling shyness, regret, and shame, and I do feel compassion for the situation she’s in with Chairwoman Jang and support her decision to stop being Chairwoman Jang’s puppet. But her actions still speak louder to me. As much as I want to cheer her and Jin-woo on to find happiness together (and maybe a divorce will actually help by taking the pressure off), I just can’t wish her well when she’s still doing things that she knows will harm others, both personally and professionally.
Just when I was starting to soften towards Ga-kyung for being nice to Jin-woo and even defending him, she took something that Ta-mi did to help her out, and used it to attack her. Ta-mi gave Ga-kyung the proof of Jin-woo’s keyword manipulation mostly to get Godori for Barro, but also because Ta-mi is a genuinely kind person who knew that giving Ga-kyung the proof was a nice thing to do. But Ga-kyung almost instantly turned around and used it to launch a sideways attack on Barro, accusing them of covering up the keyword manipulation… and the worst part is that it’s true. Brian didn’t protect Ta-mi by investigating when he had the chance, and he knows it. But that fact that it was true won’t fix the damage that Ga-kyung has done to what few shreds of a relationship she and Ta-mi had left.
On the lighter side, I loved seeing Ta-mi and Mo-gun navigating their new baby relationship, flip-flopping from earnest vows of love to jealous rants and pouting fits. Their strength is that they discuss whatever they’re feeling (now that MT isn’t hiding anymore), and I particularly appreciate Mo-gun’s willingness to show his vulnerable side to Ta-mi. We had another sweet role-reversal in that Mo-gun was the one who feared being abandoned if they slept together again, which was both adorable and endearing, and though I’m bracing myself for the inevitable fight they’re going to have when the subject of marriage comes up again, I’m just enjoying that for now, they’re able to communicate and be honest about what’s between them.
Speaking of endearing, can we talk about Ji-hwan for a minute?? He’s such a pure little soul, and I can’t deal with the heartbroken way he sobbed at the thought of never seeing his beloved dog’s face again. I don’t know how he acts with others, since we’ve only seen him with Hyun, but it’s so sweet how he’s comfortable enough to be vulnerable and unashamed of his emotions around her, and I love how it completely disarms her to see him that way. It’s blindingly obvious that he likes Hyun, though I think she’s confusing her own feelings for admiration as a fan, and the more nurturing feelings of a caring noona. I think that Ji-hwan is perfect for Hyun — she seems to have a habit of dating jerks, and Ji-hwan’s soft, unassuming nature would be a nice change for a woman who’s sick and tired of dealing with toxic masculinity.
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