Goodbye Mr. Black: Episode 18
Is there finally, finally some happiness on the horizon for Mr. Black? I can’t decide if happy times are a bad omen and I should be feeling dread for what’s around the bend in finale week, but you know what—I’m going to enjoy it while it lasts, even if it’s just for one episode. Today we will take what victories we can get, however short-lived they might be.
EPISODE 18 RECAP
After finally confessing that he’s ill, Black holds his arms out wide for Swan. She’s already heard the bad news before coming here, and she stands at a distance with tears in her eyes, shouting over and over, “You said you loved me!”
She goes running to him and cries that she waited for so long, and that he won’t be able to go anywhere without her from now on. He hugs her tightly as they cry, and then she tells him that the prognosis is the same for her too: “It could be a day, maybe a month.”
Then to herself, she thinks, “Why did I forget—that all people die someday?” She wonders what regrets she’d have, what she was saving herself from. She decides right then and there to live like this moment is her last, and says to Black, “Love me.”
She leans in to kiss him, and he kisses her back passionately.
In a hotel room, Black sits at Swan’s feet for a while just staring into her face. In voiceover, he asks his father, “Please save me. I really want to live.” He caresses her face sweetly before kissing her again, and as he leans her onto the bed, we flash back to the start of their relationship, and are reminded of his confession that he’d love her dead or alive.
Sun-jae is having a very different night, as he trudges home after being grilled for days at the prosecutor’s office. He calls out for his father but no one answers, and he finds that Dad has left, and there’s food on the table with a note for Mari to eat because Sun-jae worries about her.
He crawls into bed and spills tears thinking about his predicament, having exchanged his freedom for Mari’s (not exactly his idea, but that was how he was released). Teacher Baek’s warning rings in his ears, about Mari being the perfect scapegoat for their crimes.
In the morning, Black and Swan linger in bed soaking up some leisurely snuggles, until Swan realizes how late she is for work. She tries to hurry him through breakfast, so Black says he’ll be quick and leans in close… Rawr?
She waves him away and says that’ll have to wait till after work, and Black teases, “What’s after work? I was just going to say we should hurry up and eat. What’re we going to do after work, huh?” Cheeky. She finally gets him to shut up by feeding him eggs. It’s adorable.
Swan tenses up when they pull up outside Teacher Baek’s house, but Black is done being avoidy (Thank goodness. We’ve had enough of that.) and he leads the way in.
Black just announces point-blank to her father that they were together last night, and after Teacher Baek barks at Swan to go upstairs, Black tells him privately that he plans to marry Swan as soon as he finishes a few things he’s got going on. Just a few small things. Like your demise.
Teacher Baek asks what Black will do if he doesn’t give his permission for them to marry, but Black says he understood Teacher Baek’s tacit approval to include all of this. I think they both know Black doesn’t care about his approval in any real way, and Teacher Baek just enjoys warning Black that he’ll have a friendly visitor today at the office.
Sun-jae is back at work, and the first thing he does is call a board meeting to yell at anyone who voted to have him fired. For once his outburst doesn’t scare everyone into submission though, and Black interrupts to speak to Sun-jae privately.
Sun-jae just continues to take his rage out on Black, acting snide about the fact that Black took his place while he was gone (completely missing the irony that he took Black’s entire life five years ago, of course).
He’s practically foaming at the mouth as he declares that he wants to kill Black, admitting that the second time is always easier. He swears again that he wasn’t the one to pull the trigger on Black’s father, but Black points out that knowing the truth and keeping it hidden makes him no different from Teacher Baek in his eyes.
Black says that Sun-jae can stop with all the warnings now: “We’re already enemies. Min Sun-jae, when I’m happy you’re enraged, aren’t you? When you’re enraged and broken down, I’m happy.” Sun-jae is taken aback, but he agrees and adds that he’ll kill Black in the end.
After Sun-jae leaves, Black’s teammates fill him in on the fact that Sun-jae was released from custody because Mari is being investigated in his place. He’s also alerted to a breaking news story…
At the same time, Swan is hearing about the news article from the housekeeper, who says that Sung-min has gone on strike since reading it. Swan’s eyes widen as she reads the headline announcing the marriage between Sunwoo Construction’s Cha Ji-won and Sunwoo Distrbution’s Baek Eun-young. Well that’s a terrible way to find out you’re engaged.
Sung-min has a fit over the idea of Black becoming in-laws with his mortal enemy, and refuses to acknowledge the story as fact. Swan just pleads with him to find some way of curing Black, apologizing for all the times she’s been rude to him until now.
Even Sung-min is softened by the way Swan begs for him to save Black’s life, but he pushes her hand away and says it’s too late, and that they should just continue as things were. He takes out CT scans of Black’s brain and explains just how dire things are for him, and that Black came here to get revenge knowing he didn’t have much time left.
Sung-min admits that he wants to tell Black to spend his remaining time peacefully instead of constantly endangering himself, but when he thinks about all the wrong done to Black’s family and how the baddies are just living large without consequence, he can’t stand in the way of his revenge. His heart is in the right place, but he makes it worse by pointing out the cruel fact that Swan is Teacher Baek’s daughter, which only makes her cry more.
Black calls, so Swan runs out to meet up with him and Woo-jin, who are trying to figure out a way to clear VP Seo’s name. He isn’t allowed visitation even from his son, but Black has an idea and ushers them outside when he senses someone following them.
VP Seo is startled when a man in a choir robe approaches him in the prison yard. It’s Sung-min, using his old choir-boy-with-a-pastry routine, and he sidles up to VP Seo to ask if he has any evidence tying Sun-jae or Teacher Baek to his crimes.
VP Seo is wary of trusting anyone, but Sung-min suggests trusting Black. He also points out that everyone on Sun-jae or Teacher Baek’s side has ended up dead in this prison, which is a pretty strong argument, I’d say.
Mari doesn’t say a word throughout her interrogation, which infuriates the prosecutor. She refuses to meet with any visitors and even refuses a lawyer, which makes it impossible for Sun-jae to help her.
The prosecutor general is worried about Sun-jae leaking the gambling VIP list if they keep Mari too long, though Teacher Baek isn’t ready to let her go so easily. They’re interrupted by a commotion outside as henchmen battle it out in the hallway, and behind them Sun-jae marches in looking like he wants to kill somebody.
Sun-jae storms into the meeting and drops USB drives and empties a briefcase of cash on the table, threatening exactly what the prosecutor general expected and fuming at Teacher Baek for his sideways attack on Mari.
Then the party gets really awkward when Black and Swan enter the room. Teacher Baek just enjoys the moment and says that the engagement story in the press was his way of giving their relationship his approval. And then he invites Black and Sun-jae for a drink, like it’s the most normal thing in the world.
So the three mortal enemies sit around a table sharing drinks and veiled barbs, and Teacher Baek gleefully tells Sun-jae that Black is about to become his son-in-law. He chuckles and says he’s going to have two children soon, which is about as much as Black can handle. He leaves to go clear his head, and then Sun-jae asks if Teacher Baek has gone insane. Takes one to know one. Teacher Baek is loving it though, because he thinks he’s finally got the Get Out of Jail Free card with this unholy union.
Black catches Teacher Baek’s henchman following him around the halls, so he takes a moment to threaten him and very courteously point out that Killer 1.0 didn’t live very long, so Killer 2.0 ought to watch his back.
Then in the study, Black catches Sun-jae’s henchman digging through the desk, and everyone comes in to see Black pinning him up against the wall. No one seems to notice that Black uses this as a distraction to plant a tiny camera in Teacher Baek’s office.
Once they’re alone, Sun-jae demands that Teacher Baek hand over the incriminating evidence against him concerning the illegal gas company bid. Like he’s gonna just hand that over? Teacher Baek just asks for the pen recorder in exchange.
Sun-jae reprises his whole song and dance about how if the truth comes out, Teacher Baek gets slammed with murder and other charges far worse than Sun-jae will. But Teacher Baek says that he’s safe because he’s got money, whereas Sun-jae has nothing without Sunwoo Group.
Teacher Baek’s real insurance plan is Swan’s marriage to Black though, because he points out that either of them will only be investigated if Black brings charges against them. He wonders if Black would really accuse his father-in-law of murder and still be happy with Swan. Teacher Baek: “He’ll want to believe that you killed his father. Why? For my daughter.” He laughs maniacally, erupting into a full-on giggle fit like a loon.
Black and Swan escape the lair for a coffee date, and she asks him for a house of their own, with rent split down the middle like the hut they used to have on the beach in Thailand. She knows they can’t go back there, but she wants something like it, and she wants to live together.
Black says it sounds a lot like a proposal to him, and holds out his hand for a ring. Swan offers to get him one with her next paycheck, and he grins from ear to ear.
Ji-ryun calls with an update after Ji-soo’s surgery, and he says that she’s doing so well that he might fly home early. They’re awfully snuggly over there in that hospital bed, and Ji-soo seems really happy with Ji-ryun by her side.
Her smile fades a little when she hears that Swan is with her brother, but she asks Swan not to forget the promise she made (to stay by Black’s side). Ji-soo says she really wants to see Oppa again, just once, and he assures her that things will turn out well and she’ll see again.
Sung-min and Black use the hidden camera in Teacher Baek’s office to spy on him, and they get to see the video that he’s lording over Sun-jae (of him looking at the illegal gas bid documents five years ago). Sung-min hacks into Teacher Baek’s computer to get access to his files.
Out in the kitchen, Swan has brought over a giant sack of onions, and she tells Black to have some every morning because they’re good for his health. He throws his arm around her and pouts, saying that it’ll make his breath too stinky for kisses then.
She says she doesn’t mind because she likes onions, and Sung-min gets jealous and squeezes in between them to pry them apart. He nags Swan for getting Black’s heart rate up to unhealthy levels, and Black agrees, and then he pulls her aside to his bedroom while Sung-min sputters. The housekeeper sighs enviously while watching them, and this time Sung-min flirts back and chases her around the table.
Black surprises Swan by taking her to their new house, and as he shows her around, he promises to take her back to the beach hut in Thailand someday. His hand starts to shake while he has his arms wrapped around her in a backhug, but Swan takes it in stride and holds his hand in hers.
She makes him promise that he’ll catch chickens while she sells mango juice, and insists that the tips are hers. Black insists he’s strong enough to make her dinner, so Swan says he can do all the cooking and cleaning then. Though he’s immediately distracted when he remembers what they were supposed to do after work today.
Sun-jae finally gets in to see Mari at the prosecutor’s interrogation room, and he tells her he’ll have a lawyer here soon. But Mari says she prefers it in here—she’d been living with guilt all this while, and it makes her feel better to pay penance this way.
Sun-jae grabs her hands and begs her not to take the fall for this, insisting that things can go back to the way they were when they were happy. But Mari suddenly cuts in with: “I love you. You said it was okay if it was a lie. I love you. Now let me go.”
She pulls her hands out of his grasp, and a tear rolls down Sun-jae’s cheek. Mari asks if he needs to hear it again, and then says with an ice-cold expression: “I love you. I love you. I love you!” She’s finally saying the words he wanted to hear, but he cries, heartbroken.
Black and Swan grill out in their yard, and the sight of Black at the barbeque grill brings back another childhood memory for Swan, of a younger man grilling food while Teacher Baek brought her the stuffed elephant. Hm, could this mean that Teacher Baek isn’t her father?
The memory doesn’t mean much to Swan now, and she’s distracted when Black’s leg gives out. He winces in pain and looks over at her, but Swan purposely looks away and chatters on about the stars, giving him a chance to recover. He seems grateful for it.
Gye-dong calls Black with an update after following Teacher Baek’s henchman around, and he says that Director Nam is likely dead already. Black doesn’t seem surprised, and as he hangs up, he suffers another headache which goes unnoticed by Swan.
Sung-min waits for Teacher Baek to step away from his computer to copy the files, including the incriminating video of Sun-jae. He picks the wrong moment to start though, because Teacher Baek starts to walk back to the desk while the files are still being transferred.
He’s inches away from seeing the screen and Sung-min holds his breath… but then a henchman interrupts at just the right moment, and files are safely copied over. But what Sung-min doesn’t notice is that Teacher Baek sees one last flashing notification on his screen that files were copied. (What kind of hacking program sends friendly notifications to the person who got hacked?)
Teacher Baek assumes it was Sun-jae, and asks him to cough up the video he copied. But it’s news to Sun-jae, and he freaks out over the thought that it could be Black who’s now in possession of the video. Teacher Baek figures it’s Sun-jae’s problem now, and chides him for not killing Black when he had the chance.
As he walks away, we see in flashback that Teacher Baek knew all along that Black was hacking his computer. He had a prison guard watching VP Seo and knew that Team Black was looking for evidence against Sun-jae, so he offered up the video on a silver platter, and Black took the bait. Teacher Baek is just waiting it out for Black and Sun-jae to fight each other to the death, leaving him the last man standing.
Swan’s co-workers at Panda News bring up her wedding to Black, though they’re careful to tread lightly when Woo-jin stirs awake from his nap. When the others scurry away, Swan approaches him and he warns her to choose her words carefully since she ought to know what it’s like to have an unrequited love.
He’s a little confused when she says, “You’re like honey,” but she explains, “Winnie the Pooh said, a day without a friend is like a honey pot without the honey.” Awwww. Woo-jin scoffs at being called a friend, but when she says he can call her anytime he wants a drink in the middle of the afternoon, he gives a little nod and a smile.
Ji-ryun and Ji-soo prepare to come home after her surgery, and Ji-ryun cutely makes her pinky-swear that she won’t be too disappointed when she takes off her bandages and sees his face. She laughs and says he was always cute, but he doesn’t want to be thought of as cute, and asks her to call him by name from now on. She complies readily, calling him Ji-ryun-sshi.
Black and Swan head out to go meet Ji-soo, and Sung-min squeezes in between them again so he can link arms with Black and keep him to himself. But the housekeeper just squeezes in between them and takes Sung-min away.
While all this is going on down in the parking garage, Sun-jae skulks around in Black’s hallway, dressed like he’s trying to be Mr. Black. Hm, Black and Dark Blue are taken, so you can be Mr. Gray since you’re shady. His henchman has already planted a camera in the hallway to get the lock code, so Sun-jae easily makes his way inside. He draws a gun with a silencer on it, but no one’s home.
Except that downstairs, Black has a sudden headache and he says he forgot something, and heads back up to the apartment…
Sun-jae fails to get the computer unlocked, so he runs a program on it to crack the password. While he does that, he sees a folder on the desk of Black’s medical files, and takes pictures of the CT scan.
That’s as far as Sun-jae gets before Black suddenly runs into the apartment. He goes straight for the bathroom and vomits into the toilet, and Sun-jae watches curiously. But then Swan comes running in after Black, and Sun-jae hides just two feet away from her on the other side of the fireplace, gun drawn. Nobody turn on the lights!
Swan goes over to the bathroom, but Black shuts the door so she can’t see him, and he collapses to the floor clutching his head. Sun-jae manages to stay out of sight through all this, but he can obviously tell that Black is very sick.
His henchman later confirms what the CT scans show—that Black’s brain will soon implode—and Sun-jae drinks alone in his mansion, contemplating this new twist.
Ji-soo’s bandages finally come off, and everyone waits with bated breath as she opens her eyes. The doctor asks if she can see, and she opens her eyes, then says, “Oppa…”
Yet another Sunwoo Group board meeting is called to decide Sun-jae’s fate, but when Black arrives to fire Sun-jae for good and show everyone the video, Sun-jae surprises him by declaring that he stole the gas company bid and made the illegal deal, and will turn himself into the police.
Sun-jae puts a hand on Black’s shoulder on his way out, and whispers that it’s too bad Black didn’t get a chance to show his video. Sun-jae is positively beaming as he asks Black how long he’s got left—a month, maybe a few months? Sun-jae figures that he’ll serve a light prison term since he’s confessing to his crimes, and then by the time he’s back out, Black will already be dead.
Sun-jae gives a little satisfied smirk as he declares, “I won.” But Black scoffs back and asks when he got so stupid, and informs Sun-jae that Teacher Baek purposely handed that video over to him.
In flashback we see that Black had threatened Teacher Baek’s henchman in order to pickpocket his phone and put a bug on it, which meant he overheard everything that Teacher Baek was planning.
Black says he’s been played, and one look at Teacher Baek’s smug face confirms this. Black mirrors Sun-jae’s gesture and puts a hand on his shoulder, and whispers that he won’t be escaping so easily this time.
Detectives storm into the room on cue, but instead of going for Sun-jae, they cross the room and stop in front of Teacher Baek, and they arrest him for kidnapping Ji-soo. To make Sun-jae feel even saltier for turning himself in just now, Black puts up a slide for his presentation, not the video of Sun-jae at all, and points out that it wasn’t really Sun-jae’s turn to go to jail today, but he went ahead and confessed. Muahaha.
Teacher Baek flails as he’s handcuffed and escorted out, and Ji-soo arrives with Ji-ryun. She’s wearing sunglasses and says that she remembers Teacher Baek’s voice as her captor, and when he argues that she can’t even see, she takes off her sunglasses and looks him straight in the eye.
Ji-soo says she remembers this face too, and says he was the one who pushed her off the balcony in Thailand. OH. Sun-jae’s head whips around at that, and Ji-soo gives him a pointed look as she prods Sun-jae to agree that he saw Teacher Baek pushing her. Nicely played.
Black, Ji-soo, and Ji-ryun stand by as they watch Teacher Baek and Sun-jae get led into the elevator by the cops, and they smile in satisfaction. Have they finally won?
Swan sets the table at home and surveys her work with a smile, but when the wind kicks up and blows out her candles, she gets a weird feeling. She steps outside and watches as a storm rolls in, and the sight of birds flying away to avoid the rain brings back the memory of that tsunami she survived as a child, and the events just before it hit.
Black comes home to a dark house and he’s alarmed when he finds Swan crouched in the kitchen, rocking back and forth in a catatonic state. She doesn’t see him, and just cries over and over, “Help me, help me.”
We finally see the memory she recovered that put her in this state: Just before the tsunami, she had walked in on Teacher Baek murdering her mother. And at his feet was the body of another man—the one Swan remembered at the barbeque grill.
In the present, Swan comes to her senses and sees Black, and then she says with tears in her eyes, “He killed them… my mom and dad… he killed them… That person, Baek Eun-do… BAEK EUN-DO KILLED THEM!” Her scream turns to a shudder, and Black’s eyes widen in shock.
Well phew. Teacher Baek isn’t her real father! It does make me a little resentful that we had to spend all that time with her feeling guilt over it. But I prefer it this way, because the my-father-killed-your-father angst didn’t really do it for me to begin with (not like it would have if she, for instance, loved her father dearly and never knew he was a raging asshole). In this story, her parentage was a late discovery anyway and I only ever thought Swan went to reclaim her family to help Black with his revenge, so there’s no love lost there.
It would’ve been nice if this discovery had happened a little sooner, since a double murder charge would’ve helped in getting Teacher Baek behind bars, but I guess it was satisfying to see Black bring Teacher Baek down in his own clever twist. I didn’t expect them to pin Sun-jae’s crimes on Teacher Baek, but whatever works. At this point I’m not really concerned with attributing the right crime to the right culprit, because between the two of them, there’s been a lot of murder and mayhem. Let’s get them in custody first, and sort out the charges later. As long as they both end up going down for Chairman’s Cha’s murder which started this whole thing, I don’t know that I care how the divvy up the rest of the rap sheet (except for Mari—she should go free).
The one thing that drives me crazy in this drama is that we’re still relying on evidence that existed five years ago—the video of Sun-jae and the pen recording of Teacher Baek—which provides zero excitement in the present day and makes our good guys seem rather slow. It’s not like they’re discovering a new clever way to entrap the baddies; they’re chasing after recordings that are just there for the taking. I see that it works to assume that Teacher Baek and Sun-jae would always keep something incriminating on each other, for mutually assured destruction. But the downside is that it makes me wonder what the heck Team Black has been doing for five years if they still can’t get that damned pen. I’ve come to terms with the fact that this drama will never be suspenseful (thanks to the director), but it would be nice if there were some bigger twists up ahead in the story.
This episode already started to feel like a finale, with Black and Swan starting their new life together and everyone pairing off in cute couples. I really do like Ji-soo and Ji-ryun together, and Sung-min and the housekeeper are fun for comic relief, though to me he’ll always love Black the most. I think we’ve exhausted the boardroom drama (please tell me we’ve exhausted it, please), which just leaves criminal investigations for the bad guys and that pesky brain injury thing that might keep Black from getting his happy ending. C’mon, let’s give the guy a break. Breakthrough miracle cure? Anyone have Yong-pal on speed dial? Now that he’s finally got some domestic bliss in his life, it seems too cruel to end it like this… right?
- Goodbye Mr. Black: Episode 17
- Goodbye Mr. Black: Episode 16
- Goodbye Mr. Black: Episode 15
- Goodbye Mr. Black: Episode 14
- Goodbye Mr. Black: Episode 13
- Goodbye Mr. Black: Episode 12
- Goodbye Mr. Black: Episode 11
- Goodbye Mr. Black: Episode 10
- Goodbye Mr. Black: Episode 9
- Goodbye Mr. Black: Episode 8
- Goodbye Mr. Black: Episode 7
- Goodbye Mr. Black: Episode 6
- Goodbye Mr. Black: Episode 5
- Goodbye Mr. Black: Episode 4
- Goodbye Mr. Black: Episode 3
- Goodbye Mr. Black: Episode 2
- Goodbye Mr. Black: Episode 1