Entertainer: Episode 6
Getting the group together is only the first of many hurdles for the Dddanddara Band, especially when KTOP is determined to keep them from debuting at all costs. Unless something changes, they have no hope going up against such a powerful nemesis. Seok-ho will have to do some serious soul-searching about the kind of man he’s been, and the kind of man he wants to be from now on.
EPISODE 6 RECAP
Ha-neul finds Seok-ho sitting under a lighthouse, and he tells him that he and Geu-rin have moved to Seoul. The whole band is living together, and they’re all waiting for him to come back and guide them.
He tells Seok-ho that he thought he was right, that KTOP wouldn’t leave them alone and that Seok-ho would blame himself. But he says that he still wants to sing, and he still wants to do it with Seok-ho as his producer. He says that he trusts Seok-ho to come back, and that they all miss him, and he leaves Seok-ho to his thoughts.
Ha-neul gets jealously cranky when Geu-rin peppers him with questions about Seok-ho, but she says she’s just anxious for him to return so they can start making music. Ha-neul doesn’t want to tell the others he found Seok-ho yet, to give him time.
The boys get part-time jobs while they wait, and Seok-ho spends his time watching the boats and thinking about Ha-neul’s visit.
Then one day, as Joo-han is heading to work, he hears a voice behind him: “How have you been?” It’s Seok-ho, he’s back! Joo-han actually seems glad to see him, even if it’s only because life is more interesting with a rival to challenge you.
Seok-ho tells Joo-han that Ddanddara Band will be getting started, and that he knows Joo-han will try to stop them. He gave Joo-han a hard time when they worked together, so Seok-ho figures all’s fair, and tells him to bring it on. He also promises that he’ll be working hard to to clear Ha-neul’s name, and warns Joo-han to prepare himself. Gauntlet. Thrown.
Seok-ho looks less confident when he gets to the Mango studio, though seeing the sign back up makes him smile. Min-joo is there, and she cries when she sees him, but she just cutely sniffles that she’s hungry. Seok-ho tells her to let her emotions out if she misses him that badly, and thanks her sweetly.
Geu-rin and the boys all get a text at the same time from Seok-ho, telling them to meet him at the Mango office. They react with varying degrees of surprise and happiness, then Geu-rin tells them all to eat, now, they gotta go.
Seok-ho looks stern when they arrive, and it throws the guys off — is he angry? He finally turns to them with a smile, and awww, Kyle is the first to start sniffling. It’s adorable, and the others can’t help teasing him.
Seok-ho thanks them for waiting for him, but warns them not to think this means he’s going to be nicer to them. Kyle complains that he’s awful, after making them suffer waiting for him for six months (whoa, he was gone that long??), but Seok-ho just chuckles and gives everyone hugs.
Later Seok-ho asks Geu-rin for a report, as manager of the band, and he praises her for taking Kyle’s side when he got in the fight. He gives her a candy apple, the reward he promised for giving Ha-neul the box with the Nirvana album in it, and praises her again for keeping everyone together while he was gone.
Ha-neul sees Seok-ho giving Geu-rin a pat on the head for a job well done, and he pretends to wipe something off her hair later, just to be the last one to touch her. So cute.
Min-joo pronounces the song that Kyle and Ha-neul wrote to be worth producing, which means they need to find a drummer. Geu-rin says she’s been checking out small clubs for their first performance, but Seok-ho is determined to make their debut on a large stage.
Seok-ho asks Ha-neul why he’s not in college — is he using the band as an excuse to coast? Ha-neul shrugs that he tried out for music school but failed, guessing it was his record that made them turn him down. Seok-ho promises to clear his name… not because he’s special, but because he’s innocent.
Next Seok-ho visits his parents, who run a restaurant, and who gave Yeon-soo a job when he needed one. Seok-ho and Yeon-soo walk home together and Kyle repays the money Seok-ho gave him when he disbanded Ddanddara, insisting when Seok-ho tries to decline.
Seok-ho goes to Man-shik’s to stay the night and almost gets decked by Man-shik in a tiger kigurumi costume wielding a Spiderman doll as a weapon, hee. Man-shik fusses at him for disappearing then wanting a place to stay, but eventually relents.
Geu-rin works on cleaning their practice studio while Kyle complains about the literal egg crates on the walls, though Yeon-soo stays positive as usual. Seok-ho hates the place and calls the owner to voice his displeasure, but he runs into Mr. Byun outside before he reaches him by phone. It turns out they know each other — Mr. Byun used to work for KTOP.
Hilariously, Seok-ho doesn’t realize Mr. Byun is the studio’s owner until he starts ranting about how awful the place is, oops. He’s highly amused to hear that Mr. Byun distributes meditation tapes and religious music for a living now.
He heads to a music store and happens to hear someone banging away on a set of drums, and follows the sound to find a kid playing the drums with a huge grin on his face. He watches as the kid lies to his mother that he’s buying books for school, and once he’s gone, Seok-ho asks the store owner who he is.
He’s a Seoul University student, who isn’t a musician per se, but he comes by to play the store’s used drum set whenever he has time. Seok-ho goes to the school campus and finds the student after a class, and watches his mother pick him up. Seok-ho mutters to himself that it won’t be easy to talk a mama’s boy into joining Ddanddara, but his expression is determined.
The next time the student shows up to play the drums, his face falls when he sees that it’s been sold. The store owner gives him a note that says, “If you want the drums back, come find me at this address!”
The address leads him to Ddanddara’s practice studio, where he finds Seok-ho playing the drums. Seok-ho asks him if he’d like to play the drums for real, not just for fun, and the kid perks up at that.
His main concern is being able to find practice time around his school schedule. Seok-ho assures him that he’s not asking him to quit school, and he’s skilled enough to pick up their songs pretty quickly. But wouldn’t life be boring, only doing one thing and never having fun?
The kid is nervous, but the lure of playing the drums in a real band is too much for him to resist. Seok-ho brings him to the Mango office to meet everyone, where he introduces himself as SEO JAE-HOON (Teen Top’s L.Joe), and Seok-ho literally chases Kyle around the office while he blurts out everyone’s deepest secrets, PFFT. I guess it makes sense to tell the new guy all the bad stuff right up front.
Jae-hoon processes all this, then squeals in excitement — it’s just like in the movies! He may look like a square on the outside, but the new guy is a total heodang.
Seok-ho’s decided that Ddanddara’s debut needs to be an opening performance for a television music show, which is… lofty, to say the least. Man-shik thinks he’s nuts for even considering it, but he won’t be talked out of it.
Since Geu-rin’s job as manager will involve a lot of driving, and she hasn’t driven for a while, Seok-ho offers to take her out and give her some pointers. Ha, she drives about three miles an hour, and he practically begs her to go a little faster which freaks her out.
She guns the accelerator, then slams on the brakes to avoid pedestrians, then gets out of the car angrily when Seok-ho yells at her. She flops down on the curb and starts to cry, so Seok-ho apologizes for being a bit too hard on her.
He tries to massage her shoulders and she screams at him, causing him to blurt out, “This is why you should never teach your wife or girlfriend to drive!” Little Freudian slip there, buddy? Geu-rin yells back that she’s not his wife or girlfriend, and Seok-ho’s all I’m just saying!
The band teach Jae-hoon their song, but he’s never played with a band before and Kyle has to remind him not to overpower Ha-neul’s voice. Jae-hoon marvels at how well the band works together, still seeing this as some big dramatic adventure. Hee, he’s the cutest dork ever.
Soon they’re good enough to start recording, and we get a montage of everything they’ve gone through to get here as we hear their song for the first time. They’re very good, and seem to have great chemistry together.
CEO Lee has heard that Seok-ho is recording an album with a new band, but Joo-han confidently says that he’s blacklisted him from promoting them anywhere, even smaller Hongdae stages. CEO Lee asks why he didn’t just stop him from making the album in the first place, but Joo-han thought it would be more fun if he let Seok-ho get his hopes up first.
They’re even blacklisted from putting the song up on online stores, and Seok-ho mutters that they need to find a way around KTOP. He doesn’t say what his plan is, but he hides a secret little smile from Min-joo and Man-shik.
He plays the song for Mr. Byun, and asks if he can put it on his website as this month’s religious music. Mr. Byun is impressed enough by the song, and Ha-neul in particular, that he agrees.
Seok-ho asks if Mr. Byun remembers Jo Sung-hyun, and the name makes Mr. Byun go oddly still. Seok-ho thinks he doesn’t remember him and reminds him that Sung-hyun is the guy he agreed to help with his album while Seok-ho was in Moscow.
When Seok-ho says that Ha-neul is Sung-hyun’s younger brother, Mr. Byun looks nervous and his hands start to shake. He remembers sitting in a car with CEO Lee and telling him that Sung-hyun was dead, and CEO Lee had pretended that he didn’t know Sung-hyun.
The Ddanddara boys look painfully awkward at their album photo shoot, though it kinda works for them. They manage to get several endearingly gawky shots.
Seok-ho tracks down the Jackson fan club president, who just so happens to be an amateur photographer. He asks if he can see the pictures she took at the Jackson showcase in Busan, deflecting her questions, just saying that he needs to see them because of Jinu. She’s convinced, and shows him photos of Jinu looking really out of it that night, leaning on a girl and getting into a taxi with her.
Seok-ho has to really swallow his pride to approach a PD he’s been rude to in the past, in order to give him a copy of Ddanddara Band’s album. Ha, PD Park blows him off, and Seok-ho chickens out. He gives himself a pep talk in the bathroom, practicing being bold or even crying, and he’s interrupted when someone in a stall asks him to hand him some toilet paper.
Cringing from the smell (ew), Seok-ho helps the guy, and when the man comes out he says that he heard Seok-ho practicing, and tells him that the best thing to do when you’re desperate is beg. Seok-ho gives up and goes back to the car, but before Geu-rin can drive away, he stops her and goes back in, figuring he’s got nothing to lose.
He finds PD Park and braces himself, then slides to his knees in front of the guy. He apologizes for bullying him when he was an assistant, and begs him to please help him, just this once. He just asks that Ddanddara Band be allowed on stage one time, saying that the kids shouldn’t suffer for being associated with him, and asks PD Park to give them a chance.
Seok-ho even offers to come kneel like this every day until he’s made up for how he treated PD Park, but we don’t hear the answer to Seok-ho’s tearful request. But Seok-ho looks downcast as he goes back down to the lobby, with people staring and laughing all around him. He starts to slink out in shame, but suddenly realizes, “This isn’t right.”
He loudly announces to the entire lobby that he’s the CEO of Mango Entertainment, and the manager of Ddanddara Band, Shin Seok-ho. He hollers, “Thank you. Thank you!!” and waltzes out, head held high and proud.
Outside he motions to Geu-rin to wait just a little longer, and goes to a secluded area to get himself together. He tears up from the humiliation of what he just had to do, and repeats the names of the band members (and Chan-hee) over and over, reminding himself why he’s doing this.
Geu-rin has Seok-ho’s favorite coffee drink ready when he gets back to the car, and she doesn’t even ask how it went in there. She just says that he’s the best boss she’s ever had, her favorite, and she believes that whatever happened, he did well. Awww, he needed to hear that.
HAHA, Seok-ho mishears her say he’s her “first person” for “first love,” and he’s so flustered he accidentally drinks Geu-rin’s macchiato.
As it turns out, Seok-ho’s bent-knee apology works, and PD Park is convinced to put Ddanddara Band on television. Nothing Joo-han does can change his mind, and the stations executive director is from the U.S., so as CEO Lee puts it, he doesn’t know to fear KTOP. He tells Joo-han to relay the message that if Ddanddara goes on their station, no band from KTOP will ever grace their stage again.
Seok-ho does the happy dance of joy when he gets the call that Ddanddara will go on stage, and the entire band celebrates. Jae-hoon belatedly realizes his mother might see him and asks if he can wear a mask, ha. But before they can even process the good news, Man-shik announces KTOP’s threat to the TV station.
Worried, Min-joo literally drags a reluctant Seok-ho to see a therapist, citing his inability to sleep. He’s resistant, saying that he’s not crazy, but Min-joo argues that if he were sick he’d see a doctor — he’s suffering, and he just needs a different kind of doctor.
The doctor pronounces Seok-ho stressed, which doesn’t seem like much of a stretch. He tells Seok-ho that he doesn’t have to take everything on himself, and gives him some medication to try. Seok-ho storms out of the office yelling that the guy is a quack, and Min-joo smiles to herself that the doctor must have struck a nerve.
The next morning Geu-rin finds Seok-ho’s prescription in the garbage, along with a picture he’d drawn of himself in the rain. The doctor had used it as proof that he’s shouldering the responsibility for everything, since he didn’t even draw himself with a raincoat or umbrella. She looks up what the picture could represent, and finds the same information — stress.
The Jackson fan club president calls Seok-ho, saying that another club member has more pictures of Jinu from that night in Busan, but they’re a little offensive.
Mr. Byun goes to see CEO Lee, looking determined and almost angry, and warns him to leave Ha-neul alone. He says he’s Sung-hyun’s brother, but CEO Lee acts as if that’s of no interest to him. He asks why he should care, and Mr. Byun simply answers, “You killed him. Jo Sung-hyun.”
Meanwhile Seok-ho looks at these new pictures of Jinu in Busan, but what interests him isn’t what Jinu is doing — there in the background, with an evil, calculating expression on his face, is Joo-han.
I didn’t see it coming, but I’m not at all surprised to learn that CEO Lee was somehow involved with Ha-neul’s brother Sung-hyun’s death. Dramaland is a small world, you know. I appreciate how we’re getting little bits and pieces of the story as the show goes on, instead of just one big information dump, because it keeps us (or me, at least) interested and on the hook, eager to tune in and learn more. I have a feeling we still haven’t learned most of the truth of the night Ha-neul was framed, and that it all leads back to CEO Lee in some way or another. Same for Sung-hyun’s death — it all feels connected, and with many different threads.
Now that the show seems to have found its direction, we can focus more on the band itself, and this episode starts to feel a little more like the fun, lighthearted drama I was expected from the promo material. It’s not that I mind the darker aspects of the plot, with Ha-neul’s false conviction and KTOP’s involvement, in fact I think that giving one of its main characters a sexual assault conviction was quite brave for a drama about music. The show has done a decent job playing out the details of what happened and teasing who the true mastermind is (every time I think I know how it is, we learn something new and my opinion changes), but this week’s episodes lightened up that aspect of the story and turned more attention to Seok-ho and his relationship with the Ddanddara boys.
As I said in the previous recap, it feels more balanced, and I appreciate the “feel” of the show much more this week. I do find the assault subplot interesting and I’m interested to see how it affects Ddanddara as they begin their music career, but I’m also enjoying getting to know the band members better, and seeing their new little family form. Each of them has such a distinct personality and reason for being in the band, and yet they all mesh so well together and it shows in their first song. I can’t get enough of them, and want to see even more of the Ddanddara boys together, please!
I’m also enjoying seeing Seok-ho changing, almost becoming a different person many times over, as he learns how to be without the cache of KTOP’s name and power backing him up. He thought he was a big shot, but it was really just everyone being afraid of upsetting him because of who he worked for. Now that he doesn’t have a huge powerhouse behind him, he’s learning how to gain people’s trust and help on his own, which is necessitating some pretty serious introspection on Seok-ho’s part.
I think the show is following his transformation well as he learns each lesson, like how to apologize for his behavior and humble himself to ask for help. And when he does, he does it with utmost sincerity and true remorse, which I really like about him as a character. He’s not just paying lip service to get what he wants — he really, truly means it when he apologizes for treating someone badly, even if the humiliation stings. And he’s doing it for the right reasons, because it’s the right thing to do, and because, as he said, those boys are innocent, and talented, and deserve to be given a chance on their own merit and not punished for being associated with him. Ironically, by doing what he can to make sure they aren’t negatively affected by being his band, Seok-ho is slowly but surely changing into the kind of man who deserves their trust and respect.
- Entertainer: Episode 5
- Entertainer: Episode 4
- Entertainer: Episode 3
- Entertainer: Episode 2
- Entertainer: Episode 1
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- Entertainer’s crabby producer throws a tantrum
- Ji Sung and Hyeri shake it in Entertainer’s first teaser