Woori the Virgin: Episodes 9-10
Just when I thought this drama couldn’t get any more chaotic, our love story and murder mystery plots converge, and our leading lady finds herself in the crosshairs of our story’s most illusive and mysterious antagonist. Will she and her family make it out safely? And which suitor will be by her side?
EPISODES 9-10 WEECAP
After kissing Raphael and realizing it was, in fact, not a dream, Woori is flustered, and runs home and hides from her embarrassment under her bed covers — a move I found extremely relatable. She confides in Ye-ri, who is eager to reap the secondhand benefits of Woori’s potential long-term relationship with Raphael, but Ye-ri also sets aside her daydreams of free spa treatments to be a voice of reason: Raphael has finalized his divorce, right?
Cut to Raphael skipping out of divorce court. Ma-ri annoyingly insists that their relationship is not over, but as Raphael reminds her, the paperwork is filed and there ain’t nothin’ she can do about it. Ma-ri’s mother, however, has a different opinion. She’s disillusioned into thinking Raphael will come crawling back to his attractive ex-wife when he starts thinking of “Little Raphael” and not his brain — just so long as he doesn’t have another woman. Uhhhh, who wants to tell them?
Ye-ri tricks Woori into meeting with Raphael, which allows the two of them to clear the air and admit to liking one another. Tentatively, they begin dating, but Woori wants to take things slow. Unfortunately, their budding relationship doesn’t remain a secret for long, and everyone has their own opinion on the new couple. While most of the people orbiting Woori and Raphael approve of their romance — even Duk-bae — Eun-ran has reservations. She’s still a bit biased towards Gang-jae, but she’s mostly worried that Raphael is Woori’s hormone-induced rebound relationship.
Aside from Eun-ran, the only other people voicing their complaints are Ma-ri and Mi-ja. For some reason, Mi-ja can’t let go of her tenuous connection with the Diamond Medical Facility, so she ominously suggests that Raphael’s interest in Woori is an extension of his affection for the baby. If something happens to the baby — *sinister eyebrow wiggles* — then he will naturally lose interest in the baby mama.
Ma-ri is uncomfortable with the idea of instigating a miscarriage, but she’s also spineless and does whatever her momma tells her to do. So Ma-ri meets Woori for tea and slips a poison in Woori’s drink, but then Raphael appears. He’s angry that Ma-ri is meddling in his current relationship, and his anger causes Ma-ri to waver. She takes Woori’s untouched drink from her hands and throws it in Woori’s face. Raphael and Woori are appalled by her tropey villainous behavior, unaware that Ma-ri actually underwent some character growth and saved them from her own poor decisions.
Mi-ja is displeased, but Ma-ri tearfully explains that she couldn’t kill Raphael’s only chance of having a biological baby. Incredulous, Mi-ja asks, “Do you actually care for him?” Ma-ri is uncertain about her own emotions, unable to voice whether her decision was either the result of genuine affection or her developing empathy and a moral compass — two things Mi-ja does not seem to possess. In the background, Doo-pal saws away at his shackles using a nail file he stole from Mi-ja.
After their encounter with Ma-ri, Raphael — behind the scenes, of course — arranges it so that Ye-ri and Woori accompany the rest of the drama’s crew to the east coast while they film on location. Ye-ri and Woori do touristy things for a while, and Woori is only passively suspicious that they’re not doing any actual work. Eventually, Ye-ri ditches Woori so they can “hang out separately,” which Woori hilariously suspects is code for Ye-ri is pooping.
In reality, Raphael is on standby, and he manufactures a chance encounter — next to the phallic lighthouse where they shared a kiss all those years ago. They go on a romantic date, and discussion naturally turns to the first time they met. Raphael is astonished to learn that he was Woori’s very first kiss, but his shock turns to embarrassment when he discovers that Woori caught him smooching another woman — definitely not his cousin — the next day.
He’s ashamed of his former playboy ways, and his embarrassment grows when he finds out that Woori — despite having a vow of chastity — chose to carry the baby. In light of these revelations, Raphael feels extremely unworthy of Woori’s affection, and he can’t shake the feeling. Not even Woori’s constant assurances that she’s fine with his past make him see himself the way she does.
While Woori and Raphael’s relationship blossoms, Gang-jae continues his obsessive pursuit of the elusive Chairman Kim. Gang-jae brings in a drug expert to examine the secret room at Diamond Medical Foundation, and he’s surprised to learn that the space was not ventilated enough to cook up drugs. He tries to track down the workers involved in the construction of the building, but after one of them mistakes him for an intruder and knocks him unconscious, Gang-jae winds up in the ER.
Coincidentally, while he and Na-hee are at the hospital, their boss asks them to investigate a reported gunshot victim who sought treatment at the same hospital. Turns out, the gunshot victim was the shady man who was recently smuggled into the country on the shipping container. Because his face was heavily bandaged from recent plastic surgery, Gang-jae and Na-hee were not able to identify him from the CCTV footage, but luckily he left a familiar looking duffle bag and sunglasses behind at the hospital.
The man’s bandaged face, however, turns out to be a massive break in Gang-jae’s case, and he realizes that Chairman Kim was performing plastic surgery on criminals and giving them entirely new faces! If Chairman Kim has made a business out of providing criminals with new identities, then he’s bound to have a record of their before and after photos. And if the police can get a hold of that list, then they can arrest a lot of bad guys who have been hiding in plain sight!
Gang-jae and his team comb through Ma-ri’s dead lover’s expense records, hoping they can find a lead now that they are operating with new information. That’s when Gang-jae stumbles across the credit card record for Ma-ri’s necklace and realizes that a memory card was hidden inside of it. He rushes to retrieve the necklace from Ma-ri, but she no longer has it in her possession.
Ma-ri and Mi-ja accidentally discovered the hidden memory card on their own and realized it would be worth a lot of money, so they swapped the digital list with a file detailing their ransom demands. They then gave the necklace to Woori, and after announcing — literally over the PA system — that Woori was in possession of the necklace, it was only a matter of time before Chairman Kim came looking for it. And if Woori got harmed in the process… whoops?
Gang-jae’s next stop is Woori’s house, but he’s too late. Woori woke up in the middle of the night and found (the presumed) Chairman Kim rifling through her belongings. He takes Grandma hostage, and when Gang-jae lowers his weapon, Chairman Kim tosses Grandma aside. She falls to the ground, hits her head, and is knocked unconscious.
Gang-jae is torn between following his nemesis and staying behind to take care of Woori and Grandma. After a slight moment of hesitation, he chooses to carry Grandma to the hospital on his back, which seems like the worst way to transport a sixty-nine-year-old patient who has sustained a head — and possible neck — injury. But, hey, I’m not a doctor.
Grandma’s vitals are shaky, and the doctors in the ER aren’t able to give Woori and Eun-ran a satisfactory prognosis. Desperate for a miracle, Woori rushes home to find her Grandma’s special rosary, which Grandma told her was blessed and had been passed down for generations.
Of course, the rosary has no real special powers. Instead Grandma loaned the rosary to Woori whenever she was troubled, and Grandma would eavesdrop on Woori’s prayers. She would then secretly help Woori from behind the scenes. (Ooof! My heart!)
While Grandma is in the hospital, it is Gang-jae — not Raphael — who is there to help Woori and provide a shoulder to cry on. And once again, I found myself swaying to Gang-jae’s side as he tried to comfort Woori with stories about Grandma preparing food for him when he was on a stakeout.
I mean, I understand that Raphael couldn’t immediately get to Woori’s side because he was stuck in a business meeting. And yeah, once he got there he used his connections to have Grandma moved to a VIP suite, but moments like these do make it harder to root for the demise of Gang-jae and Woori’s relationship — especially when you consider that all that harmonious history abruptly ended in the span of a few weeks because of Woori’s pregnancy. Kids are deal breakers in relationships, though, and if Gang-jae isn’t willing to be the baby’s daddy, then Team Raphael it is!
Grandma wakes up just in time to overhear Eun-ran swear that she will break up with Hyung-sik so Grandma can keep dating his father. Grandma is petty enough to hold Eun-ran to that promise — not that it really matters because Eun-ran unintentionally made her priorities clear when she answered Sung-il’s phone call but never returned Hyung-sik’s.
Meanwhile, Ma-ri’s guilt has grown, and she’s also started to seriously question Mi-ja’s choices. It all comes to head when Doo-pal — who sawed through his shackles and escaped — grabs Ma-ri and holds a knife to her neck. He threatens to kill himself and take Ma-ri with him, and Mi-ja begs him not to do it. But then he stabs Ma-ri in the neck! Oh snap! Did… did this show just kill off Ma-ri?
No, no it did not.
Doo-pal stabbed Ma-ri with a retractable knife to prove to Ma-ri that her mother can walk. The fake-out was a pretty good twist, and I’m curious to see what comes of Ma-ri now that she’s (hopefully) free of her mother’s influence.
While Ma-ri has discovered her mother’s true colors, Gang-jae is working on trying to figure out Chairman Kim’s true identity, and right now his top suspect is Raphael. His theory is fueled a bit by his jealousy and protectiveness of Woori, but he has a few logical reasons to suspect Raphael, too.
First, Raphael has easy access to Diamond Medical Foundation. Second, Chairman Kim’s criminal hiatus coincides with Raphael’s two-year battle with cancer. Third, when Chairman Kim attacked Woori, he wore a bicycle helmet and used a voice modulator, implying that Woori likely knew him and would have been able to identify him from his voice. And finally, Gang-jae received a totally unsuspicious anonymous tip to check Raphael’s wall safe.
Gang-jae breaks into Diamond Medical to take a peek inside the safe. Sure enough, he finds a lot of dubious items, including the necklace that Chairman Kim stole from Woori. He convinces his boss to grant him a search warrant to come back legally the next day, but when he unlocks the safe under Duk-bae’s watchful eye, he discovers that it’s been emptied. Gang-jae demands to see Raphael, but he’s not in the office. He’s on a date with Woori.
And it’s a cheese-tastic date full of tropes that have a drama writer like Woori rolling her eyes and praying under her breath that Raphael won’t be cringey. Not only did a wait staff of ten act as an audience to his love confession — awk-ward — but then Raphael sat down at the piano. Just as he’s about to belt out his love ballad and cause Woori to die from embarrassment, Gang-jae bursts into the room and tells Raphael that he is not, under absolutely no circumstance, allowed to date Woori.
This week’s episodes have left me feeling kind of like the wait staff in the closing shot: running around with absolutely know idea of what’s going on. But I actually love the chaos and silliness, even if I don’t entirely approve of our story taking a massive detour from the core pregnancy plot. It honestly doesn’t feel like the pregnancy is relevant anymore, and once again, I lament not seeing other stages of hormonal Woori.
I have to give the writers props for keeping me guessing, though, because all the craziness has muddied the waters so much that I can’t confidently predict the secret identity of Chairman Kim. Honestly, given all the telenovela influences, I wouldn’t put it past this show to have a dramatic reveal that Raphael is Chairman Kim after all. Think about it: if Raphael was Chairman Kim, then the whole safe fiasco would have simultaneously discredited his love rival and shamed the police enough that they would hesitate to follow up on any future leads pointing to him. Just sayin’.