Uncontrollably Fond: Episode 14
It’s a question that people have been asking themselves for countless ages: Is it acceptable to do a bad thing in order to bring about a positive result? At what point does a decision become wrong, if it hurts one but helps another? The consequences can be high, and the personal cost even higher, but when it comes down to the wire, you can’t always have everything you want.
EPISODE 14 RECAP
After Eul pushes her way into his hotel room, Joon-young shoves her down onto the bed, and asks if she wants to sleep with him. He starts to unzip her clothes, telling her to say the word if she wants him to stop. She says that she won’t leave his side, and closes her eyes, expecting Joon-young to kiss her. But instead, Joon-young jumps up and leaves the room.
Joon-young’s mother’s restaurant is bustling, but she still answers when he calls. He interrupts her greeting and asks for three reason why he can’t date Eul… he knows he gave her a list, but he can’t remember anything. Mom claims to be too busy to talk and hangs up, and Joon-young says to the now-dead connection that he’ll date her then, if Mom can’t remember, either. He’ll just pretend there weren’t any reasons.
Out the window he can see Eul walking dazedly, and Ji-tae’s accusation — that everything would be different if Joon-young hadn’t taken Eul’s USB and caused her accident — rings in his mind. Joon-young thinks about how Eul nearly ran down Assemblyman Choi, proving that she’s still haunted by his involvement in her father’s death.
He watches from a distance, but he doesn’t go to Eul.
Instead, the next morning, he dresses carefully in a nice suit and sets up a video camera, then sits to speak. He tells the camera that he was recently only give a few months to live, and he breaks into this heart-twisting smile as he says that everyone dies at some point.
His mother changes her Shin Joon-young Fans Prohibited signs to say that his fans are now welcome, awww.
She finds Gook-young in the kitchen, having quit his job as Joon-young’s manager and decided to come work here instead. He accuses Mom of raising Joon-young badly, to allow a woman to be treated the way Eul was treated by the rude star Yoon-hoo.
Ajusshi knocks his son upside the head for saying such a thing, but Gook-young is on a roll and decides that he should go tell Joon-young what’s what. Ajusshi prepares to beat some sense into his son, and Gook-young is forced to run, ha.
Gook-young gets chased around the restaurant, then asks who Ajusshi would save first if they were drowning: him, or Joon-young? His sister Man-ok teases him for being jealous of Joon-young, then he gets his arm nearly twisted off by the waiter Young-deok for daring to raise his hand to her. Mom hollers at them all to stop it, and demands to know exactly what Joon-young did to Eul.
Meanwhile Eul is in a meeting with Jik’s teacher, who’s concerned because Jik says he doesn’t want to go to college. This is news to Eul, and naturally unacceptable.
Jik bursts into the room to protest that his teacher revealed what he’d asked her to keep secret. Eul yanks him outside by the ear, and yells at him for daring to not go to college after she’d worked so hard to support him.
Jik argues that she couldn’t afford the tuition anyway, and when Eul says that they have money, he tells her to stop freeloading off friends, to find a place for her and Jik to live, and to pay off the loan sharks. If she does all that, Jik promises to go to college—and only then.
Jik heads back to class, and Eul gets a phone call from Assemblyman Choi’s wife asking to meet with her.
Pororo is back in Joon-young’s house, since it looks like Eul won’t be back again, and Joon-young notices a red thread in the dog’s fur. He reaches to pluck it out but his vision blurs, and he can’t get a grip on it. He has similar trouble answering a call from his doctor, but he manages it, and the doctor asks if he’s reconsidered getting treatment.
Joon-young says that he’ll only end up dying in the hospital, but Doctor Kang can’t just sit back while his patient does nothing. He gently threatens to call Joon-young’s family, and Joon-young smiles as he says he’ll just take him to court. He quickly ends the call, before the doctor can say anything else.
He meets with Jung-eun, who’s angry because he sent her a silver necklace shaped like a key. She firmly informs him that she’s engaged, and he just barely manages not to roll his eyes. He clarifies that he got everyone on his staff a similar necklace as an apology for the ruckus yesterday, but says she can return it to him if she wants.
Jung-eun calms at that, and thanks him for apologizing to Yoon-hoo, though she’s sorry it was necessary to do it on his knees. He says that he had to do it so that she wouldn’t, and gives her a long, searching stare. Uncomfortable, Jung-eun quickly stands to leave, but she turns back and asks what Joon-young said when he pulled her from the pool.
Joon-young grins that it’s a secret, but Jung-eun insists. He gets up to stand very close to her, and says that she’s engaged, and he said that before he knew who she was. She still wants to know, but Joon-young just politely wishes her a lovely day.
Ji-tae’s gotten a new job for the family company lifting heavy boxes in a warehouse, and his (former?) assistant shows up. Dropping all formality, he calls Ji-tae a bad son, but Ji-tae smiles and says he was sent here, so he came, obeying his parents’ wishes.
But the news that Eul is in the hotel lobby with his mother alarms Ji-tae, and for good reason, because once they’re alone his mother immediately starts digging at Eul. She says snidely that Eul has a loyal supporter who even threatened her if she hurt Eul. Eul only says that she won’t leave Korea.
Ji-tae’s mother presents her with an envelope of money, offering a staggering billion won (nearly a million dollars) for Eul to send Ji-tae back to his fiancee.
Ji-tae enters his mother’s office and sees this scene, and angrily reminds his mother that he warned her to leave Eul alone. He’s taken aback when his mother says she gave Eul money, though she spins it that she was just trying to help her. He’s prepared to rip up the envelope, but Eul stops him.
She asks if the check is real, while Ji-tae gapes at her in shock. She takes the check and leaves, but he follows her out and says that she should have held out for an apology, not money. But Eul knows that his family will never apologize — no matter how long she fights, they won’t say they’re sorry.
Eul knows that even if Ji-tae stands up for her, they’d still crush her at the slightest chance. She admits that she sold Ji-tae for a billion won, and considers herself lucky to have done so.
Jung-eun doesn’t leave Joon-young’s home, but instead stands thinking on the dock over the river. She asks him what his relationship is with Eul, since it’s obvious that Eul likes him. Joon-young admits that he likes her too, which is why he beat up Yoon-hoo.
Confused, Jung-eun asks why he’s so cold to Eul then, and Joon-young replies, “Because she’s too pretty for me to have. And that makes me upset.” That makes Jung-eun angry and she calls him and Ji-tae both idiots. She nearly insults Eul, but Joon-young stops her, warning her to watch what she says.
Frustrated, Jung-eun tries to flounce off, but ends up with her heel stuck in a grate. Her shoe breaks and she falls, and Joon-young rushes to her side. When he sees her self-consciously tugging at her short hem, he shrugs off his coat and covers her legs, then carries her inside after assuring her that he’s only trying to help.
Eul is thrilled to report to Na-ri that she’s just won the lottery, and cheerfully offers to buy her friend anything she wants as thanks for all her help. Na-ri is alarmed at the cost of everything Eul wants to buy, but Eul keeps insisting that she’s loaded now. Na-ri nearly swallows her tongue when she gets a load of that check, but the shop girl refuses to take it as payment.
A hand snatches the check — it’s Ji-tae, and he offers to pay for everything himself, shocking Na-ri even further. Eul tells her friend who Ji-tae really is, and whose son he is: “He lied to us.”
She refuses to let him pay and tells him to go back to his fiancee. Instead Ji-tae tells her to take that check back to his mother, claiming to be offended that she sold him out for “only” a billion won.
Ji-tae adds that he’s not the only one she sold out — what about her father? Okay, that was way out of line. He spits that if she wants to do this, she’d better do it right and take everything his parents have. Only then will she truly be even.
Joon-young gently ices Jung-eun’s ankle, smiling as he says that he’s got experience since Eul trips a lot. Isn’t that the truth. Jung-eun seems affected by his care, and she says she’s better and readies to go. But when she gets in her, car she finds that driving hurts her ankle, and asks Joon-young to drive her home.
On the drive, Jung-eun gives Joon-young a calculating look, and asks what he thinks of her. Is she as charming as Eul? Joon-young gives her a big old side-eye and says that they have completely different charms. Jung-eun then asks if he would consider seducing her, but Joon-young reminds her that she’s engaged.
Jung-eun admits that her fiance only has eyes for Eul, and that he even broke off their engagement — and while it’s obvious that Eul likes Joon-young, Ji-tae still has feelings for her. Jung-eun boldly says that she plans to steal Joon-young from Eul, to hurt her the way Eul hurt Jung-eun, and so that Ji-tae will realize what he lost.
Joon-young doesn’t answer, but he helps her out of the car at her building and jokes that he can’t be seen carrying her in. Jung-eun asks for an answer to her question: Can she steal him from Eul? Joon-young says that no, she can’t.
As his taxi pulls away leaving Jung-eun stunned, the corner of Joon-young’s mouth betrays a tiny smile. Halfway home, he asks the taxi driver to turn around, and ends up at Na-ri’s place instead.
Joon-young hides when Na-ri exits her front door, and another taxi pulls up to let out Eul and what looks like a mountain of shopping bags. Eul is thrilled to have bought so many gifts for Na-ri and Jik, but Na-ri accuses her of not even being human — she sold out her father for that money.
Eul barks that refusing the money won’t bring her father back, or find his killer. Nobody is helping her, so what’s so bad about taking the money? Her father always said she couldn’t survive on her own, so now he can rest in peace. Jik can even go to college and live a normal life.
Eul accuses Na-ri of being jealous, but Na-ri says that that’s not it — Eul has changed. If she’s so determined to do this, she can take her money and get out of Na-ri’s home.
Ji-tae arrives home and overhears his mother discussing Jung-eun’s virtues at the dinner table, and how everyone at the company is impressed by her. Ji-tae sits down and tells the truth of what people are saying — that Jung-eun was given a job title she didn’t earn. Assemblyman Choi pleasantly points out that they said the same about Ji-tae at first, that he got his job just because he was the boss’s son. But then he proved himself and the gossip stopped. Ji-tae tells his mother to cut Jung-eun loose, since he’ll never marry her.
Later Ji-tae’s father comes to his room, and helps him put a medicated patch on his sore neck. Ji-tae tells him about the money his mother gave to Eul, but he has to admit that Eul didn’t turn it down. Assemblyman Choi tells him to stop protecting her when she’s made her choice.
Na-ri calls Ji-tae crying, stumbling over his real name, and proceeds to light him up. She yells that being rich doesn’t give him the right to belittle people, and tells him that this money has already changed Eul. She demands that he bring her old friend back, and Ji-tae’s hands shake as he struggles against angry tears.
Ji-tae collects himself and makes another call, and tells the person on the line, “I’m going to take everything my parents have.”
Ajusshi finds Joon-young’s mom sitting in her dark restaurant well after closing, and she asks him what would have happened if she’d stayed with Assemblyman Choi and not run away.
Ajusshi says in his simple way that they’d have probably had more kids and lived happily ever after, but she wants to know what kind of person Choi would have become. Would he not have turned into a horrible person, as Joon-young said?
Ajusshi sighs, and says that if she misses him, she should steal him back. It was clear to him from Assemblyman Choi’s expression that he’d leave it all if she asked. She sniffs that she feels bad for Joon-young. Because of what his father did, Joon-young can’t be with the girl he loves.
Joon-young follows Eul from a distance, but she doesn’t check into a fancy hotel like she screamed to Na-ri she’d do. She sits on some stairs with her shopping bags, drinking soju from boxes and talking to a pair of shoes she bought for Jik, hee.
She asks the shopping bags what she did that was so wrong, then yells at the shoes to stop lecturing her on ethics. She also grumbles about Na-ri, who would throw away a ten-year friendship so easily.
Then Eul lies back on the stairs and stares up at the night sky. She calls up to her father, and Joon-young looks like his heart is breaking for her.
Joon-young finally approaches once she passes out, and piggybacks her back to Na-ri’s place.
He carefully sets her down in front of the door and tells her softly that she did nothing wrong. Then he leans in as if to kiss her, but stops himself and pulls back.
Instead, he rings the doorbell and leaves.
As he walks away, Joon-young thinks to himself, ”Mom, should I give up everything else and just do what I want before I die? I’ll hold Eul’s hand, and kiss her, and hug her tiny shoulders warmly. We’ll watch movies and travel, and laugh, and be happy. Should I do that? It’s not like I need permission.”
Jik studies to take the civil service exam, while Haru beams at him and bats her eyelashes. Jik teases her for being bad at studying, grinning when she harrumphs at him, then he notices the Shin Joon-young fan club blanket she’s thrown over her shoulders. He asks if she’s still in the club, and she admits that she quit.
She figures out that Jik must be jealous, and Jik does a terrible job denying it. Haru promises to study hard and get into college, and Jik scoots over close to help her with a math problem. He’s so close and so pretty that Haru goes a little googly-eyed, and she impulsively plants a kiss on his cheek. He jumps and calls her a pervert, hee.
Eul looks like nine miles of bad road in the morning, and she finds a grumpy note from Na-ri, who made her some hangover soup. Awww. A visitor at the door proves to be Ji-tae’s former assistant, who must be Jung-eun’s current assistant, as he summons Eul to meet with Jung-eun.
It just so happens to be Jung-eun’s birthday, and Joon-young buys her a nice pair of shoes to replace the ones she ruined at his home. He calls her office and requests a meeting.
Eul is led into an opulent, empty restaurant, where Jung-eun asks her to eat together for her birthday. She explains that this is the restaurant she manages, and she ordered it closed so they could speak privately. She asks if Eul knows who she is beyond the director of the movie project, and impatiently snaps that she’s Ji-tae’s fiancee — although, because of Eul, there was no engagement.
Jung-eun asks imperiously if Eul has anything to say to her besides just a simple “I’m sorry,” and Eul explains that she’s not going to see Ji-tae again.
Jung-eun spits that she’s better not, especially after taking a billion won as a promise. Eul’s phone buzzes with a call from Ji-tae, but Jung-eun snatches the phone away and answers it herself. Ji-tae, thinking he’s talking to Eul, asks if she’s with Jung-eun, and Jung-eun answers that she is.
Jung-eun says to Ji-tae that Eul needs to be taught a lesson, for taking so much money and not keeping her promise not to see him. Should she tell his mother? Ji-tae frantically tells Jung-eun to send Eul away and that he’ll be there soon, but Jung-eun just hangs up on him.
Eul says she’s sorry again, and Jung-eun loses her temper, screaming, “How sorry are you?!” She stands and lifts the tablecloth, dumping their entire meal in Eul’s lap. “How dare you? You don’t even deserve my jealousy!”
Again Eul apologizes and tries to explain, but Jung-eun can’t be calmed, and she yanks Eul up by the collar. She says that if Eul is so sorry, then she can die. She can go kill herself if she feels that bad, so that Ji-tae can never go back to her.
Ji-tae arrives and pushes Jung-eun off of Eul, and tells Eul to wait outside. Eul apologizes one last time, promising Jung-eun that she really won’t see Ji-tae again, and she leaves on shaking legs.
Ji-tae turns his anger on Jung-eun, who frankly looks like her mind is about to snap. He asks how cruel he needs to be before she gives up, his voice rising to a scream.
Eul waits for the elevator, and when the door opens, there stands Joon-young, holding flowers and a gift. He’s obviously here to see Jung-eun, and Eul just stares at him, his betrayal shining in her eyes.
I don’t really understand Jung-eun’s fury at Eul — Eul hasn’t seen Ji-tae since she took the money from his mother, and she has every intention of breaking things off with him. And she was telling him it was never going to happen between them before she even took the money. Jung-eun’s jealousy is entirely misplaced. She should be angry with Ji-tae, if she’s going to be angry with anyone. He’s the one who stood her up at their engagement, and he’s the one pursuing a poor “unworthy” girl who doesn’t even want him.
But Jung-eun has never been that interested in logic, and she seems to be coming genuinely unhinged. She doesn’t need a fiance, she needs a therapist. I do admit though, that it’s interesting for once, to have a second lead female who’s not after the leading male. It makes the love square that much more interesting, that she wants the guy that the heroine isn’t even interested in, and it’s still causing problems.
I’ve previously discussed how refreshing it is that (though the show is a tad on the dramatic side, heh), all of the characters have both positive and negative traits. Nobody is purely evil or purely good, and I still think that’s true. But to expand on it, I also appreciate that even though I may not agree with the characters’ motives, they all have an in-character reason for doing the things they do. They may make horrific choices at times, but you can see from their perspective why they did it. And mostly, that motive comes from what seems like a good place — to protect their family, to be a good leader, to seek justice, to shield the person they love. But as the drama shows us, power corrupts, and it’s easy to begin to think that your desire for something good justifies doing bad things in order to get it.
I have managed to keep from crying while watching this show until now, but Joon-young’s self-recorded will (at least that’s what I’m assuming that recording was) nearly broke me, and finally made me cry. He looked so lost and alone, but so achingly open and honest that I almost couldn’t take it. I’m pretty certain at this point that there won’t be a ninth-inning miracle for Joon-young, since his particular cancer is known to be viciously deadly and he’s refused any treatment for it (and it’s probably too late at this point, anyway). So seeing him go through the realization that he’s really dying is painful, even as he accepts it with more grace than I think most people would be capable of.
As harsh as she was, I actually think that Eul did the right thing, taking that money from Ji-tae’s mother. His family owes her everything, and she knows that they owe her an apology most of all, but she’s pragmatic enough to realize that that will never happen. So why shouldn’t she take the money, if it’s the only thing she can reasonably expect from them and it will change her and Jik’s life? I even agree that her father would have told her to take the money, and live a comfortable and happy life.
However, I’m not sure I agree that Eul “sold” Ji-tae, since she never made any promises to him, but I can understand why she said such a hurtful thing to him. In order to move on with her life she needs to take this money and make a clean break, and leave Ji-tae and his entire family behind. It has nothing to do with Joon-young, or really even Ji-tae, and everything to do with putting the painful past behind her and finding one good thing to come out of it. If she can’t have justice, the least she can have is a comfortable life, and a future for Jik. It’s not often that I root for a heroine to take the money over love, but in this case, Eul’s got one man who doesn’t seem to want her, and one man who wants her, but whose entire family has deeply harmed her and threatens to do it again. So take that money and RUN, girl, run far and fast.
I do think I’ve calmed down since the last episode in regards to Joon-young, though I still want to whomp him over the head for not grabbing love while he can (provided he’s willing to be open with Eul about his illness). As a man whose life goal was to be an upstanding, honest prosecutor, it’s always been clear that giving up that dream was painful to Joon-young. He made the best of the alternative, but he’s always felt that he let his mother and himself down by not being the man they’d planned for him to be. By helping solve this last mystery for Eul, and making her father’s killer confess, he’s getting one last chance to do a good thing for society in general, and one woman in particular. Actually two women if you think about it, because I still think that Jung-eun could be redeemed and become a better person if she truly repented and paid for her mistake. If he can pull this off, Joon-young can leave this world knowing that at least one time, when it really mattered, he did the honorable thing.
- Uncontrollably Fond: Episode 13
- Uncontrollably Fond: Episode 12
- Uncontrollably Fond: Episode 11
- Uncontrollably Fond: Episode 10
- Uncontrollably Fond: Episode 9
- Uncontrollably Fond: Episode 8
- Uncontrollably Fond: Episode 7
- Uncontrollably Fond: Episode 6
- Uncontrollably Fond: Episode 5
- Uncontrollably Fond: Episode 4
- Uncontrollably Fond: Episode 3
- Uncontrollably Fond: Episode 2
- Uncontrollably Fond: Episode 1