JoAnne: And then I wrote what you will see is a book, because I couldn't bear to skim over anything. Sorry. Not really.
kakashi: When JoAnne writes a book-length SqueeCap, it's either because she is delirious with fever (happened last year with an epic Heirs recap) or because she's delirious with love. (It's love.)
JoAnne: We open in the dark warehouse where Jung Tae was lured by promises of kidnapped children to save. Our hero is nearly blind from the bright headlights shining in his face, and he's surrounded by 8-10 men with sticks and pipes. When asked to confirm his identity he basically says 'Yep, and you aren't ever going to forget it, either.' Serious balls on this guy. He makes short work of most of them but Jung Tae takes a brutal beating all the same.
kakashi: Guy doesn't even flinch. Respect, bro.
kakashi: Meet Jung-tae, the zombie-vampire (see below)
kakashi: It was about then when I realized that watching this drama will be goddamn hard. They're going to break our hearts, JoAnne, into little tiny pieces. Then, they will take each piece and put a nail through it. Then, the pieces will be eaten by a crazy dog or something.
kakashi: Let's discuss this romance for a bit. I don't care much about it, to be honest, because this drama is about so much more (and so much better stuff). Still. There is something here that surprisingly works for me, cause it's different (and I'm totally into different lately, to be honest, because the same-same of KDrama has completely lost my interest). This romance, if we want to call it that, is absolutely heart breaking, because he really wants to be that guy for her, but he really can't. The more he tries, the sadder it becomes. He fails and fails again and every time he does, he feels more guilty. (Exactly right.)
kakashi: My beloved Dobi .... my heart is heavy when I see you. There is a doom cloud over your heads ...
kakashi: Yes ... lovely. Though I couldn't help thinking "who would want to kiss anybody in that state? It must hurt like hell!" (yeah, not a romantic) (No, even in the face of those pecs, I wondered the same thing.)
kakashi: Oh, goosebumps. How can these actors be better and better every week?
kakashi: It's interesting that this scene changed my view of Bool Gam considerably. I always thought he was just a scumbag. But he isn't. He lives by the same or at least a very similar code of honor as do the Dobis.
JoAnne: You're right; this is where I realized he wasn't a caricature; he might be a brutal thug but he has a code of honor and the truth matters to him.
kakashi: It almost hurts me having to point out tiny little plot holes in a show that is so stunningly beautiful and amazingly good, but the beat-up at the warehouse makes little sense. Shinichi's orders were crystal clear: bring Jung-tae to me, for a fight. Why the hell does Dog Nose do something so stupid? Yeah, we know Dog Nose doesn't particularly like Jung-tae (understatement), but still ... I also don't "get" Dog Nose, not at all, and I'm not sure whether that's intentional or because of bad writing. What motivates him? What does he want? I was under the impression that a lot of the fear we saw was a play-act, i.e. to lull Shinichi, but now it seems it wasn't?
kakashi: I think she looks at him that way because A) he is thinking of another woman in his sleep, B) she realizes that the Jung-tae - Gaya relationship is something way beyond guy-girl attraction and C) because she now understands that Gaya is a threat to him.
kakashi: O M G. Haha, show! Really?!Where did THAT come from?! hahahaha.
kakashi: It amazes me, but I like both women. Usually, I have a very hard time liking ANY of the women in KDrama. One is still innocent and pure, while the other has been trained as a killer. One is soft and one is hard, but there is a lot of hardness in the soft one and a lot of softness in the hard one. Intriguing.
(awwwww, my baby ....) and Ryoko when he was a boy when Gaya slams his door open. He hurries to hide the picture and rushes to stand in front of her. She wants to know why he did 'it', and at first he claims ignorance. 'Shin Jung Tae!' she says. 'No matter for whom, I told you not to do anything! I don't care about him. I have forgotten him!' Shinichi responds that there is no anger for someone who is not important, and there are no tears for someone who is forgotten, and that she should just accept that forgotten person's death. Ohhhhh, she says, but that's the thing: Shin Jung Tae did not die (again ... did he actually order him to die?! I don't get it). And Shinichi should know this: she no longer trusts him. Gaya storms off, and Shinichi looks floored/worried/surprised - I loved it. He can be thrown off balance!
kakashi: Yes, I loved it, but I also hated it. All these character that I love are so vulnerable!
kakashi: Very interesting dynamics and emotions between these two characters. I don't get it, but it's interesting. And I do wonder what's wrong with me, but I feel sorry for Dog Nose, every single time he does that face. (me too)
kakashi: JoAnne, I love them so much ... what am I going to do?!
JoAnne: We're going to be stronger women at the end of this, with a much higher tolerance for tequila.
kakashi: Jung-tae is cool. High-five.
kakashi: This, again, is why this "romance" is interesting. Gaya puts in so much of herself, again and again, and she is disappointed, again and again. But she cannot keep away. I don't think this is going to end well.
JoAnne: Poor girl, that long drive through the snow wore you out? Or my epic-length missive has...I think you mean Ok Ryeon although in truth, Gaya does put herself out there a bit, as we come to see. I will say that I have respect for Ok Ryeon; she has strength.
kakashi: Oupsie. Gawd, all those names ....
kakashi: Since the boy is smart, he knows exactly what her mother is saying. And he knows it's true. He IS that guy: the one that dies early and leaves behind their heart broken family.
kakashi: This is really bad, people. I'm even crushing over the grandpas in this drama.
kakashi: Hot damn, JoAnne. We need another Cutie Soo post. I just died a little.
Look! (He's a beauty, it's true.)
kakashi: Shinichi seems to really, sincerely and very much worry about her. But is it just his bodyguardly duty - or maybe more?
kakashi: Ah, such a sleaze-ball. I don't find him charming at all, I'd really like to kick him somewhere where it hurts! I do not like this character (yet).
kakashi: I know, you don't like your guys all noodle-y. You like them a bit harder! (I make a bit of an exception for KJW, handsomest of the aliens.)
kakashi: Yeah, okay, this show is really clever, isn't it? Boom, show us his sensitive side! kakashi swoons. Okay, I like this character too. I am glad he has found a friend as awesome as Bobby Sox.
(OMG how can a guy be this beautiful?!). He reminds Gaya that where she goes, he must too, her constant shadow. 'There's no room for a person in a shadow,' Gaya says. 'If I take a step, you take a step.' Shinichi's response (have I ever mentioned that I am absolutely enamoured of his voice?) is interrupted by the appearance of a beautifully suited Aoki, now 900% hotter than when we saw him at the end of the scene with the freedom fighter, where he was ALREADY 1800% hotter than he was as Cutie Soo. Will it ever stop?
kakashi: He will be as hot as the sun and we will all BURN. (In this moment, down there in the navy suit...I actually thought this: Baksa who?)
kakashi: noooooooooo! Not my Dobi .....
JoAnne: Gaya surprises both men a little bit when she interrupts to say that no, SHE will handle Dobi, thankyouverymuch. Aoki simply tells her to hurry then, because Dobi has to be out of the way in order for them to move forward with the opium distribution. Huh? Just dropping in drugs like we all knew about it already.
kakashi: Evil people always deal drugs. Sometimes also the good ones. Remember Heartless City? (still)
kakashi: OMfG this was SO GOOD! Like watching two predators circle each other, each testing the other one out, looking for weaknesses and totally ready to go in for the kill. But while we know that Shinichi has weaknesses and emotions, we still need to see that with Aoki. What a scary bastard.
kakashi: I'll be back in a few. Need to go breathe.
kakashi: LOVE IT. But ... why exactly do they hate each other so? And ... who'd have thought that Cutie can be such a bitch?!
JoAnne: I think they are rivals for control of Gaya.
kakashi: I think he is slowly going insane. Maybe he can be saved? From the darkness? PS: like very much how they lit his face.
JoAnne: The lighting director is a freaking genius. That scene where Bool Gam interrogates Ddok Goo? I wrote a whole paragraph then erased it as overkill. Go back and watch that.
kakashi: Don't anger the beast, man! goodness gracious, way to sign your death warrant ...
kakashi: I keep wondering about that. To me, when he said that in the corridor of the Swiss mountain hotel it sounded like it had already happened, but now, it could very well be that he was saying that was what he was going to do?
kakashi: Oh dear, Shinichi is so delicious when he is angry. I like him in all states. Totally composed and zen-like cool. Emotional because of Princess whats-her-name. Angry and ready to explode. D e l i c i o u s. As for Bool Gam ... sorry man. I have just learned to appreciate you, but ... I know a goner when I see one.
kakashi: Was that PPL? (If yes, it was genius.)
kakashi: Awwwwww, JoAnne ... I love them so. It makes me cry. You know why .... (sigh. yes. We knew it from the start, though. Such goodness cannot survive.)
kakashi: I like him emotional, I like him fuming ... but I DO like him best when he is a cold, deadly asshole.
kakashi: Doom. It begins.
JoAnne: The men file outside, at which point Gaya exits the vehicle. Boss Hwang shoots Jung Tae this LOOK... Jung Tae hangs his head. Gaya remarks that nothing seems to have changed. Boss Hwang takes a closer look and shows some surprise to recognize that scruffy girl in the woman standing before him. She invites him to go for a ride. Jung Tae is all 'I got this, Hyung.' but gets brushed aside. 'She's my guest today,' he says. As Boss Hwang enters the sedan, the two most expressionless faces in the entire drama stare at each other lingeringly. I think longingly, as well, but perhaps that's just me.
kakashi: Unfinished-business-ly, more like. And not-so-sure-this-is-going-to-end-well-ishly.
kakashi: Next time I have an unpleasant talk with somebody, I'm SO going to use this "the river will freeze over and you will never live to see it unfreeze" line. It's über-cool.
kakashi: I thought she was pretty scary alright! Hwang is an idiot not to be more afraid. Just leave and live somewhere else! Don't die! Please, don't die!
JoAnne: Shinichi is wondering the same thing, apparently, and reminds Gaya that this wasn't supposed to be a meeting about discussing things and finding solutions. She needs to act decisively. Petulant Gaya frowns at Shinichi and tells him to just watch her make decisions, she will make decisions, oh boy, will she ever, and won't he just SEE, then. Hmmmph. They drive off and leave poor Boss Hwang standing alone by the river.
kakashi: Whom do you think has had more plastic surgery on their nose, him or her? (him)
kakashi: This page helps: http://asianwiki.com/Inspiring_Generation. Seems to be Omogari.
JoAnne: Something is up. Omogari is giving suspiciously nervous glances at Bool Gam's passed-out image in the rear-view mirror. They've driven out of town, and at some point Omogari stops by the side of the road. We hear the owls so we know it's REEAAAAALLY remote. Omogari wakes Bool Gam up with an announcement that they've 'arrived', though. Hmmm. Bool Gam doesn't think anything looks suspicious though and heads off to pee in the woods. Behind the car, Ddok Goo emerges from the woods. Oh boy. He's got a stick in one hand, money for Omogari in the other, and a determined look on his face. This doesn't bode well for Bool Gam, folks. Yup. Dog Nose sneaks up behind the peeing, humming Bool Gam. As he gets near, though, Bool Gam straightens up. He's actually completely sober. He absolutely knows what Ddok Goo is planning and asks him if he'll be the first that Ddok Goo has killed. He asks him to be brave and do it right; if Ddok Goo screws up he might change his mind and go after him, instead.
kakashi: Always very sad when people are so resolved to die ...
kakashi: This? Like opera. People die, but sing on and on for hours. I mean this in a good way. (This is KDrama Shakespeare, this is. Well. I'm not familiar enough with the older melos to really say that, but of the last 5-6 years? Yeah.)
kakashi: Farewell, Bool-gam. You were honorable. Fare thee well.
kakashi: Dog Nose just killed his "dad". He is so doomed.
JoAnne: Back in town, Shinichi waits for Jung Tae to return home. Jung Tae calls him out as the shadow figure behind Ddok Goo, and Shinichi doesn't even try to deny it. His job is to protect Gaya, and he'll do whatever it takes. Jung Tae misunderstands and says it's Shinichi's fault that Gaya is in danger, since he brought her into that organization. But no, Shinichi responds. A woman weakens in love or in farewell - but if Gaya weakens, she will die. It's for this reason that Shinichi must kill Jung Tae. He causes Gaya to weaken.
kakashi: This makes perfect sense. So it's nothing personal - but as a bodyguard, Shinichi must eradicate all threats for her. And Jung-tae seems to be the biggest of them all.
kakashi: Hm. Oh yeah, it would be totally dishonorable to go against an unarmed guy with a sword. But would it in Shinichi's world? He has a sword. Jung-tae does not. I am sure he isn't even allowed to have one, let alone wear one. It's his way of showing who the master is. Also, don't forget ... Shinichi isn't interested in an honorable fight. He wants him dead. End of story.
(arrogant bastard) and explaining that this isn't the right place. They should fight in front of Gaya. Dude, what are you trying to do? Do you love her? What is going on? Shinichi explains to Jung Tae that Il Ghuk Hwe actually has orders to destroy Dobi, but if Jung Tae will come to fight and die in front of Gaya...he doesn't finish that sentence. If Jung Tae WINS, though, Shinichi will not destroy Dobi and he will bear the consequence of his actions. So..what? If he loses, Dobi goes down? Is that it?
kakashi: I don't think Shinichi love-loves Gaya. But she is the most precious thing to him, so that is also a kind of love. My explanation for the fighting in front of Gaya is this whole thing about strength. She must be strong, so seeing the potentially deadly weakness she has die would serve the right purpose.
(with a wicked little smile) that the decision belongs to Gaya alone, so no dice on that one, sorry. Jung Tae's still down though, and promises to appear. Just wait, he says. You'll see my real self then.
JoAnne: Later in the evening, Boss Hwang finally makes it back from the river and finds Jung Tae waiting in the yard at Dobi House. He tells Boss that it's his fault Il Ghuk Hwe is eyeing the Dobi family and promises to take care of it. Boss Hwang reminds Jung Tae that he's part of that family, too. All the time, not just when they eat together - and go inside and get some sleep before his balls freeze, please. Jung Tae responds with a request for help: he needs to know how to win a fight against swords. Annnnnnnnnnd, SCENE.
kakashi: It is time to say goodbye to some of these characters, folks. We're 7 episodes in, and only a few people have died yet. Soon, the carnage will begin. I do not know how I will be able to deal with it... (I'll probably write a book. *coughs*)
JoAnne: Well I don't know about you but I am just drained. Why is Shinichi being such an ass? You cannot tell me that his thing about Jung Tae isn't personal. Please don't be that guy, Shinichi. Please. On the other hand: Aoki, you deliciously evil man you - I like it. I like it!
kakashi: 3 hours of giffing, screencapping and commenting! Awesome! No, I'm not drained. And Shinichi is delicious, even though he is a total asshole. And since this was a very Shinichi-heavy episode, I am quite happy right now. The black sugar coating that is Aoki made it perfect.
JoAnne: I have a bit of a problem with Gaya - I can see that she feels something for Jung Tae and I mentally appreciate her desire to avenge her parents but her shift was just so sudden and absolute and it feels forced to me. She's the only person I really struggle with, at this point - I see what she's doing and I know why she's doing it but I don't FEEL why she's doing it and I feel everyone else.
kakashi: Yeah, it's not quite clear what her deal is. But I think that's part of the allure. Characters that have secrets and keep secrets? Give me more.
JoAnne: That whole bit with See Ok and Ok Ryeon? Too freaking cute for words. All these side people are just so REAL, too. And the show continues to deliver the sly bits of humor that I love in a very organic way, which just makes me love the whole thing even more. Because if you hadn't noticed.... I love this drama. So very, very much. I'm sure I'll pay for this, down the road. Much like Jung Tae, I don't care. It's worth it.
kakashi: You don't say ... you love this drama? No, I haven't noticed. Seriously, I actually fear I'm going to piss people off with all this raving. Where is the snark? It's completely gone! We're a gooey mess of pink fluffballs!
JoAnne: It has to go south in SOME kind of way... we'll find something to snark about just to save ourselves.
Jo Note: Possible side effect of enormous cast, and not a happy one: There was no Aka in this episode, nor was there any Leader Mo. We haven't seen Jung Tae Appa in several episodes, Crazy Eyes hasn't shown up YET..and there was only one scene with Kim Jae Wook. Granted, it was a great scene. But that's all there was. Personally, I feel the lack of Aka deeply. I expect you to correct this immediately, Show.
kakashi: Never crush on a side-side-side character. It's KDrama rule No 4087.