Hundred Million Stars From the Sky: Episode 2
As Moo-young’s relationship with Seung-ah continues to develop, Jin-kang grows more suspicious of his motives. But the more they cross paths, the more Jin-kang unwittingly draws Moo-young’s attention. Meanwhile, Jin-kook continues to search for the killer while keeping a wary eye on Moo-young.
EPISODE 2 RECAP
In a private room at a restaurant, Jin-kook has finally succeeded in setting up a date between his sister, Jin-kang, and rookie detective Cho-rong, but lacks the sense to know when to leave. Cho-rong’s clumsy attempts to drop hints miss their mark, but Jin-kang smoothly suggests they grab a beer and whisks him out of the room before Jin-kook can protest.
Over the phone, co-worker So-jung chides Jin-kook’s tactlessness. He assures her he’s on his way home… and crouches a little lower as he sneaks up to a table overlooking where Jin-kang and Cho-rong are continuing their date. Hee.
Unaware they have an audience, Cho-rong is smitten with Jin-kang as she talks passionately about her work as a designer. They start on their drinks just as an employee catches Jin-kook’s eye. It’s Moo-young! Moo-young makes eye contact with Jin-kook and holds his gaze as he makes his way over to the bar and takes a seat just a few feet from the young couple.
Bashfully, Cho-rong admits to Jin-kang that he hadn’t expected Jin-kook’s sister to be so young or so pretty. She brings up her brother’s nickname, “Manager Yoo,” and Cho-rong says he finds the nickname strange because Jin-kook can be quite intimidating at times. Jin-kang waves him off, sighing that her brother never has any interesting stories to tell her from work.
Cho-rong blurts out that he’ll tell her lots of stories if she’ll go out with him, causing Jin-kang to start and Moo-young to snort. Cho-rong walks back his dating proposal and says he’d like to start off by “officially having a flirtation” with Jin-kang and earnestly lists off the things they could do together. In his excitement, he accidentally knocks into a server, sending a tray of food sailing at Jin-kang.
Stripping off her soiled jacket, Jin-kang attempts to excuse herself while keeping her scarred arm out of view. She freezes when a hoodie suddenly falls around her shoulders and she looks up to see Moo-young walking away. On his way out, Moo-young tosses a quick smirk up at Jin-kook.
At home that evening, Jin-kook tries to bring up getting the burn scar removed but Jin-kang says she thinks it’s cute, teasing that it’ll grow on him. He sighs and asks about the hoodie instead, but Jin-kang just assures him it’s nothing and tosses it in the wash.
The next day Jin-kook laments to So-jung about Jin-kang’s scar. He can’t understand why she secretly saved up money in middle school to get it removed, and then suddenly changed her mind. Ever since then, she’s claimed she’s grown attached but Jin-kook worries about her future husband and in-laws.
Their conversation is interrupted by the arrival of Cho-rong running up with the DNA results from the crime scene. It’s a match for the victim’s boyfriend and Cho-rong starts to leave but Cho-rong suddenly stops Jin-kook to announce that he owns an apartment.
Jin-kook blinks at him and asks why he’s sharing this information. Cho-rong awkwardly says he just felt the need to tell him and then runs off. So-jung can’t contain her laughter and sputters that Cho-rong must really like Jin-kang, to Jin-kook’s delight.
Jin-kang meets Seung-ah for dinner and is embarrassed to hear that Seung-ah received a call from Jin-kang’s boss about the business proposal she was supposed to deliver to Seung-ah’s boyfriend, Woo-sang. Jin-kang hands it over, admitting she didn’t feel comfortable pressuring her.
Seung-ah waves it off, but is shocked to learn Woo-sang is now the majority shareholder of Arts Brewery, where Moo-young works. Jin-kang picks up on Seung-ah’s weird reaction and learns that she’s been avoiding Woo-sang. Laughing that Jin-kang’s proposal will give her a good excuse to talk to him, Seung-ah adds that there’s someone she wants Jin-kang to meet.
Jin-kang’s face falls as she sees Moo-young walk towards them. He sits and Seung-ah introduces him as her boyfriend. Shaking off her confusion, Jin-kang introduces herself. Moo-young cheerfully points out they’ve met before, making this their fourth encounter. Jin-kang is forced to admit she saw him at the Arts pub recently during her blind date. Moo-young is amused by her discomfort and Jin-kang quickly steers the conversation back to the menu.
Afterwards, Seung-ah pouts at Jin-kang to get a ride home with her and Moo-young, pointing out that he and Jin-kang live in the same neighborhood. Jin-kang politely refuses, and runs off before Seung-ah can argue.
Moo-young drops Seung-ah off and she presents him with a pottery piece she made herself. She gestures for a kiss in return and is disappointed when Moo-young just stands there. Pointing to a security cam, he says they have an audience but Seung-ah says she doesn’t care and kisses him anyway. Smiling, Moo-young leans in to return the kiss.
Seung-ah meets with Woo-sang and has him look over Jin-kang’s proposal. She’s angered when Woo-sang remarks that Jin-kang hung out with Seung-ah to use her. Snatching back the proposal, she announces they should break up because she likes someone else. Laughing cruelly at Seung-ah’s declaration, Woo-sang grabs her wrist as she leaves and says she’s free to date as long as she doesn’t sleep with the guy.
Jin-kang happens to spot Moo-young at the local laundromat and speeds off in the opposite direction. She returns just as he’s leaving and hands over his hoodie. He tries to tell her to keep it but she merely offers a curt thanks and starts to walk away.
Moo-young comments that she must live nearby, chuckling that their neighborhood must not be that big. Jin-kang awkwardly agrees and then wonders why he isn’t meeting with Seung-ah today. Moo-young replies she’s meeting with her grandma just as Jin-kang’s phone buzzes.
It’s Cho-rong, calling to ask Jin-kang on a date. Moo-young’s clearly listening in and when Jin-kang hangs up, Moo-young asks if she’s “officially in a flirtation” now. The words sound light but they seem aimed at getting a rise out of Jin-kang. Her face hardens and Moo-young asks if she’s mad. She snaps at him for eavesdropping but Moo-young clarifies he only happened to be within earshot. He airily points out they seem to run into each other often and apologizes for offending her.
Remembering Moo-young’s comment about meeting her three times previously, Jin-kang only recalls the pub incident and Seung-ah’s exhibition. Moo-young cheekily replies she’s wrong and Jin-kang says it seems like he’s only saying that to get her attention.
Leaning forward, Moo-young starts to say it was a long time ago, at some place, but trails off as he stares into Jin-kang’s eyes. They stare at each other for a long moment until Moo-young finally says she feels like his little sister that he lost a long time ago. Sitting back, he grins and adds “a cute little sister.”
Jin-kang’s expression remains deadpan as she asks how old he is. Moo-young quickly replies they’re the same age, but then admits he doesn’t know how old she is. Jin-kang says from the start he’s given her an unpleasant feeling and she now realizes why—he is the kind of person who thinks he can treat people however he wants and thinks all women are in love with him.
Moo-young wonders if he’s really like that and Jin-kang replies he’d know better than her. She starts to leave but suddenly shouts and races over to a truck that was about to pull away. Moo-young reaches the truck first and scoops up the cat that would’ve been crushed beneath the trucks wheel.
He asks if she plans to keep the cat, but Jin-kang shakes her head. Moo-young holds the cat up and smiles. He doesn’t respond when she asks if he’s going to keep it, but tucks the cat under his arm and starts walking home. She notices he forgot the hoodie and calls out to him, but Moo-young just tells her to keep it.
The following day, Jin-kang makes her pitch to Arts Brewery and her passion for their product goes over well with the team. Meanwhile, on the other side of the brewery, Hee-jun corners Moo-young with an envelope of cash he’d just received from Seung-ah. Smiling, Moo-young tells him to use it for tuition and Hee-jun balks at actually carrying on their lie.
Hee-jun questions Moo-young’s motives behind the farce, but Moo-young merely replies, “I wanted to know what would move a rich girl’s heart.” Outside, Jin-kang celebrates with her boss and co-worker over the response to the presentation. As they’re about to pull out, Woo-sang drives up and Jin-kang looks on warily as he walks into the building.
Her concern is well-founded as Woo-sang immediately takes an interest in Moo-young while being given a tour of the facility. Following Moo-young over to his work area, Woo-sang notices Seung-ah’s pot sitting on Moo-young’s desk. When asked about it, Moo-young simply replies it was a gift but Woo-sang already suspects he’s Seung-ah’s new boyfriend and bitterly replies that it doesn’t suit him.
Over at the police station, Jin-kook is grilling his scooter thief while Cho-rong tries to surreptitiously pack up for the day. While the other detectives are focused on chiding the rude thief, Cho-rong makes a break for the door. He’s caught and sheepishly announces he’s leaving, then bolts before anyone can argue.
At the theater, Cho-rong is so enamored with Jin-kang, he hardly watches the movie. As they leave, Jin-kang sees Moo-young with a young woman on his arm. All four make eye contact as they pass. Cho-rong sighs over the woman’s tattoo, but waves it off when Jin-kang gives him a questioning look.
Meanwhile, the woman, Im Yoo-ri, grumbles to Moo-young, identifying Cho-rong as the cop that questioned her. Moo-young asks if it was about her late friend, but Yoo-ri prickles at the term and snaps that the girl was no friend of hers. She stomps off and Moo-young just stares after her, his expression unreadable.
The next day, Jin-kook banters with his sister over the phone and has to slam on his breaks to avoid running over someone who darts into the road. Moo-young stands up with his terrified cat in his arms, but the cat is otherwise unharmed. Moo-young apologizes, explaining that his cat suddenly dove into traffic. Jin-kook is surprised that Moo-young knows Jin-kang is his sister and balks when Moo-young asks if he was stalking her at the pub the other day.
Jin-kook insists on driving Moo-young all the way home and Moo-young wonders if he’s nice because he’s a police officer, adding that he wanted to be a cop as a kid. Jin-kook looks shaken when Moo-young says his father was a cop in Haesan, but shakily denies knowing anyone from there.
The car stops but instead of getting out, Moo-young asks if Jin-kook has ever shot someone. Jin-kook tries to laugh it off, but Moo-young is persistent. He suggests Jin-kook did shoot someone and wonders if that person died. He asks what it feels like, to be the cause of someone’s death.
Growing serious, Jin-kook replies that it feels like everything is over. After a beat, he chuckles and says he’s only joking and would have no clue what it’s like. Moo-young says that killers claim to feel like gods. Jin-kook says once you kill someone, you’re no god, only a vicious murderer.
Moo-young cheerfully thanks him for his clear distinction and hops out of the car. Jin-kook asks for his name and wonders if they’d met years before. Moo-young denies it and they part ways, but both men’s expressions are dark.
At the station, Jin-kook sidles up to So-jung and not-so-nonchalantly asks her to look into Kim Moo-young. She barks at him for being so obvious and playfully shoos him away, griping that she could lose her job. But when she sits back down, she repeats the name thoughtfully.
Seung-ah shows Moo-young her studio and he’s drawn to a picture on her desk of her and Jin-kang. She receives a call from Jin-kang saying they won the bid for Arts Brewery and Moo-young listens in. Jin-kang asks if she’s free tomorrow because her boss wants to treat Seung-ah and the team but Moo-young shakes his head.
Jin-kang guesses Seung-ah has a date and starts to say something about Moo-young but Seung-ah snatches the earpiece away from Moo-young and steps outside. We don’t hear what is said, but when the girls hang up, Seung-ah returns with a sour expression.
She says Jin-kang saw him and wonders if he knows what he did was wrong. Moo-young feigns ignorance and Seung-ah’s face breaks into a smile as she says Jin-kang saw him looking bored when he went to the movies alone the other night. He jokingly apologizes for going by himself and as they hug, his expression becomes thoughtful.
Meanwhile at the station, Jin-kook runs into Cho-rong and learns that the victim’s boyfriend used his credit card in Canada and is being extradited.
The next morning Seung-ah comes downstairs to find Woo-sang chatting with her mother. Seung-ah pointedly ignores him and leaves the room in a huff when he tells her mother to expect good news. When he finds her in her room, Seung-ah tells him she’ll explain things to her mother and that he should leave.
Unperturbed, Woo-sang says he finds her most attractive when she behaves like she’s better than him when really she’s just as shallow. He retracts his permission for her to date and suggests they get married. Irritated, Seung-ah cries that she’s not an object, but a person. Woo-sang replies that whatever she is, she belongs to him.
Spotting an Arts Brewery truck, Jin-kang investigates and finds Moo-young eating lunch in a nearby restaurant. She storms in, calling out an order as she plants herself across from him. Moo-young appears neither surprised nor bothered and she immediately asks who was the woman he was with at the movies.
Moo-young nonchalantly replies, “My sister.” Jin-kang scoffs that he must see all girls as his cute sisters, but Moo-young says he only has one “cute sister,” indicating her. Ignoring his comment, Jin-kang points out that Seung-ah has real feelings towards him and wonders about his.
Flipping it around, Moo-young wonders about her and Cho-rong, noting that he also seems genuine about her. He lists off Cho-rong’s pros but sighs that he’s naive and wonders if Jin-kang is capable of loving him or if it’s just dating. She continues to stare him down so Moo-young asks if she really wants to know how he feels.
Moo-young asks how she’ll feel if he’s not sincere and Jin-kang replies she’ll be angry. He doesn’t believe her, thinking she’ll likely be gratified to know that she was right. Jin-kang spits out that he must get some sadistic pleasure from seeing the people he loves hurt and Moo-young doesn’t deny the possibility.
He thinks she’s probably interested in him, perhaps without even realizing it. Without breaking eye-contact, Jin-kang replies, “Sorry, but those tricks don’t work on me.” After a beat Moo-young says that he’s serious about Seung-ah. Jin-kang continues to stare blankly at him until he urges her to eat before her food gets cold.
Jin-kang rolls up her sleeves and Moo-young’s gaze falls on her arm. She asks if he’s never seen a burn scar before, but he says he has. He continues to look and she wonders if it bothers him. Moo-young counters that it seems to bother her since she tried to hide it from Cho-rong. Jin-kang explains that’s because it was a blind date. Moo-young asks why she doesn’t care if he sees it and she replies she just doesn’t seem to care about him.
At another restaurant, Jin-kook expresses his concerns over the murder case to So-jung. She doesn’t understand what he finds so strange about the boyfriend using his credit card, but Jin-kook argues that’s awfully careless for someone who supposedly murdered his girlfriend and fled the country. Furthermore, his apartment was extremely messy despite the meticulous way the snow globes were rearranged on the shelf at the crime scene.
Moo-young’s phone rings and the name “Yoo-ri” flashes across the screen. He can’t answer, however, because he’s in the shower. While washing, he suddenly stops and flashes back to Jin-kang talking about her scar earlier. He shifts and the soap rinses away to reveal a large burn scar encompassing his right shoulder.
Back at the restaurant, So-jung slaps a handful of papers on the table—the results from her Kim Moo-young search. Jin-kook sighs that none of them are the correct Moo-young. So-jung says that at least his guy has a clean record and asks why Jin-kook is looking into him. Jin-kook admits that he’s not sure, but whenever he sees Moo-young, he feels anxious and his heart races.
Finished with his shower, Moo-young reads Yoo-ri’s texts, whining that her sink is clogged. Meanwhile, Jin-kook runs back to the station after learning the boyfriend is being brought in. It’s chaos as the suspect is escorted inside, but Jin-kook spots Moo-young in the crowd.
Once the boyfriend is inside, the crowd disperses and Moo-young appears behind Jin-kook commenting that the suspect looks too normal for a killer.
Yoo-ri tweaks the pipe on her bathroom sink to clog it and then calls Moo-young to ask when he’ll be there to fix it. He coolly replies that he never agreed to come and she demands to know why. In response he simply states that he’s looking at her and she immediately perks up and asks where he is.
At the station, Jin-kook exits the restroom to find Moo-young isn’t waiting where he should be, while Yoo-ri runs outside and deflates when Moo-young is nowhere in sight. He repeats that he’s looking at her and now we see that he’s looking at the murder board in Jin-kook’s office—specifically the pictures.
His gaze shifts slightly to the left where a mirror hangs and his expression deadens until Jin-kook appears and asks what he’s doing in there. Smiling innocently, Moo-young says the door was open. Jin-kook kicks him out and checks the board before following as we zoom in on the photo Moo-young was fixated on and see that Yoo-ri is smiling at the camera along with a few other girls, the victim, and her boyfriend.
In the hall, Jin-kook questions why Moo-young didn’t wait by the bathrooms like he was told, and instead wandered into his office. Moo-young apologizes, stating he didn’t know he wasn’t allowed. Jin-kook asks what he’d been so engrossed in and Moo-young says, “The murderer on the wall.”
Jin-kook assumes he’s referring to the photo of the victim’s boyfriend, but Moo-young is looking at his own reflection in the door when he replies, “Yes.”
Oooh! That was spooky. I love that Moo-young is such an enigma that we never really know what he’s thinking. So many things he says could be interpreted multiple ways and so far the only people that seem to pick up on his doublespeak are the Yoo siblings. It’s always an interesting dynamic when you have an ambiguous character like Moo-young who could be stone-cold evil or just misunderstood.
I don’t know about anyone else, but I’ve been getting a bit of Devil/Mawang vibes and that’s not a bad thing. Something I loved about that show was the narrative about good and evil and the vast gray area in between. Moo-young is swimming in that gray area right now because he very clearly is manipulating Seung-ah, but to what end? So far, his behavior has been deceptive but not particularly malicious.
It almost feels like he’s running an experiment with her, testing how much he can get away with before he’s exposed. He deliberately set up that encounter at the movie theater, knowing Jin-kang would be there, and seemed to be expecting her to tell when she called Seung-ah the following day. Instead, Jin-kang surprised him by not ousting him. Where I suspect he views Seung-ah almost like a toy, I think he’s genuinely intrigued by Jin-kang.
Jin-kang doesn’t buy into Moo-young’s flippant, cocksure attitude and is immune to his charms. I really like their dynamic because it’s so electric and there’s a lot to mine there. The long, charged look when Moo-young was about to say something about their possible shared past? And that similar scar on his back? Oh, I’m so excited to find out what it all means!
Alternatively, Moo-young has an equally fascinating—albeit more disturbing—connection with Jin-kook. Both the Yoo siblings wondered at having met Moo-young previously but Jin-kook’s curiosity holds more weight because he’s much older and therefore would remember better. Plus, their odd conversation in the car just added a slew of questions to my ever-growing list.
Whatever Moo-young’s true intentions may be, I’m happy to spend 14 more hours staring at Seo In-gook on my screen.
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