08 April 2014


Jang Bori Is Here! - Episode 1 (KimJiCap)

Posted by Kakashi Sensei on April 08, 2014
kakashi: Ah, the torture begins. But who knows, maybe it will not be? There's always a chance that something we expect to be terrible is in fact, well .... not as terrible (I'm a very optimistic person!)
JoAnne: That's not going to happen here.
kakashi: Thanks *crushed* ...
kakashi: You must know the following things about me before I continue: I don't watch weekend dramas (or hardly ever). I usually don't like dramas that are longer than 20 episodes (unless they're several seasons long and well thought-through). I absolutely hate makjang. No exception. I even hate melos, hardly any exception. But .... here it comes .... I absolutely adore Kim Ji-hoon. I cannot NOT watch what he is in. Well, so that brings us to this thing here, which is a recap of his latest project.
JoAnne: All you need to know about me is that I am doing this because she asked me to, and I have no idea what this drama is about. And I was maybe a little bit delirious when I watched this.
kakashi: D'awwwwwwwwz, she loves me! You must promise me this, though: You will never think I FORCED you into this, kei? And ... if it becomes really, really bad, you are allowed to abandon me. I'm fine with it. Really.  

kakashi: For those of you not familiar with the idea of the KimJiCap, a KimJiCap is a format that was born when I took on Goddess of Marriage last year (JoAnne kindly agreed to comment on them a few episodes in - yes, she loves me that much!!!). A KimJiCap is a recap that focuses only on Kim Ji-hoon and Kim Ji-hoon related scenes. It treats all the other stuff happening in the extended family as "the Rest". That said, I will have to make an exception as long as we're forced to spend time with the kiddie-versions of the main cast. Yes, you heard me right: no Kim Ji-hoon. Not even a glimpse. Maybe not for many, many weeks to come ....
JoAnne: How long do we have the kids?  They're all cute in appearance but there's definitely one and possibly two I already want to drown.
kakashi: I have no clue, JoAnne. Just like you, I'm going into this unprepared.  

Episode 1

WTF? It's a car chase! I am confused and think I've downloaded the wrong file, but no, it's Jang Bo-ri and Kim Hye Ok as In Hwa. She's been in about everything plus some more in the last few months and seeing her here only confuses me more. I check again whether this is Jang Bo-ri and not Two Weeks, but it still is. This is SO NOT what I expected.
JoAnne: See above. No expectations (you haven't even seen the teaser?). But there has to be a trauma, so here it is.
There is a kid on the backseat of the car (no seatbelt?), a girl, who is sleepy ... and tells us a story in voice over. About a wolf and a kind hearted sheep. Only a few seconds later, the kid's asleep, and the mother is now chasing the car with Yang Mi Gyeong as Ok Soo in it. They are sister-in-laws. Also in the car, clutching a nicely wrapped parcel, is the First Son Hee Bong (Jung Won Joong). Is he not feelings well? In Hwa overtakes them on the wet road and Ok Soon loses control over the car ... it spins in the air several times (cool, this reminds me of IRIS 2) before it crashes onto the street. The kid in voice-over continues to tell the wolf-story.
JoAnne: I'm trying to remember the wolf and the sheep story. Where did we hear that before? I have it narrowed down to WolfBoy and CheongDamDong Alice. They're both probably wrong (yeah, cause it was Master's Sun - but not the same story) And also: what the HELL is happening here?
The kid in the car wakes up and sees how its mother runs out into the rain to look at the crash site. She looks out the car window and sees the obviously dead Hee Bong (even though the car is quite far away and unless the kid has laser eyes, it would never SEE the body). Anyway, the kid is dead scared and runs out into the rain herself. The mother, who hasn't noticed the kid !!!, gets back in and drives off. The kid notices the retreating car and shouts, shouts, shouts for her mother. The wolf-story ends abruptly ...
JoAnne: Oh give me a freaking break already. Really?  She just drives off?
... and cut to the same kid, opening a door, looking at colorful cloth hanging from wooden racks (I'd rather see a Kim Ji-hoon rack, but, well ...) in awe and wonder. I guess we have jumped back in time. It's not WHERE I want to jump, but, well ... We're in a traditional Korean house and the people here make hanbok ... but not ANY kind of hanbok, they're making it for the most powerful and most influential. A stern woman (Kim Yong Rim as Kim Soo Mi) has an army of women pack the clothing for the king (which king?!). There's at least 100 items. Ah, it's for a museum. Good, cause I suddenly thought this was some kind of Goong set-up. Seriously, this show is confusing me.
JoAnne: Well, so it will be colorful, at least. Hanbok are so pretty, and I love the traditional houses. I'm grasping at straws, yes.
kakashi: We think alike me friend
the kid, most like Jang Bo-ri in the future, now called Eun-bi
Alright, and now it gets interesting (though there is no Kim Ji-hoon in sight and I use "interesting" in a rather loose sense). Kim Soo-mi is the mother-in-law of both In-hwa and Ok-soo. And she says she must pick a successor in four days for what is called Bi Sool Chae (the house/business/everything). Through a competition. They are to make a set of hanboks then.
JoAnne: Oh this is the terrible grandmother from that IU/Jo Jeong Suk thing from last year (haven't seen it). She doesn't seem terrible here though (no, in fact, it's about the first NON-terrible MIL I've seen in KDrama ever). But 2nd Daughter in Law, something about her mouth just makes me want to punch her. I guess part of that is because she was that horrible woman in Two Weeks. I like the nice one though. Too bad I already know she's going to die. Thanks, Show.
Meet Halmoni / Kim Soo-mi
2nd daughter-in-law In-hwa is much smarter than timid and demure Ok-soo, that much is clear. In-hwa is also quite certainly a mean bitch. I would have thought she is the mother to our future Bo-ri, but her daughter is called Eun-bi. She isn't even in my smart-chart. Her husband is another person who is basically ALL the dramas and more, Ahn Nae Sang as Soo Bong. He is currently angry his wife isn't done with work as she has promised for the last half year. That's some overtime, wow. The kid has something important at school and the mother promises to come right after going to the museum. Wanna bet she'll not make it?
JoAnne: Don't take that bet. Just sayin'.
Cut to a different family. Oh DAMN, this is about as complicated as Age of Feeling! It's a boy, who is smelling a dress and is crying, calling for his mother. Evil dad comes in and rips the dress away. It is Han Jin Hee as Lee Dong Hoo who orders the kid to forget everything about his mother. That potentially makes the kiddo young Kim Ji-hoon!!! In comes a curly-topped woman, Woo Hee Jin as Jung Ran, Evil Dad's younger sister. We learn that the mother has died recently. Sister nice, Daddy baaaaaad.
JoAnne: I had looked away for a moment, or passed out, or something, and I woke up to this boy clutching cloth to his face and I thought he was sniffing panties (uhm .... maybe they were?!). And then he started crying about his mom and things got really weird. And so... let me get this straight.... the mother is dead, the kid is just supposed to be over it like nothing?
At the school, the mother isn't there, of course ... she is still at the museum, doing important grown-up stuff with very valuable clothing. She's a mean egoist. But daddy comes. The kids do presentations with totally NOT kid-drawn pics and stories that they tell about their homes. Eun-bi cries because her mother never plays with her. Awwwwww... working mothers. So hard on kids, then, now, and in the future.
JoAnne: Oh, don't get me started. You make your priorities, and that woman is just not a good mother. I worked from the time Tori was 3 and I was there for everything. Poor little girl with the crappy mom, look at her sweet little face.
kakashi: There's two fathers there, the other 48 parents are all mothers
At the Bi Sool Chae, stern Halmoni finds broken scissors (she gave them to her daughter-in-laws) and remembers the night her son was poisoned by carbon monoxide. The reason for the poisonous gas coming up into his room (huh?) is the tip of that scissors that was stuck in the floor (double huh?). Who on earth tried to kill her son?! Halmoni asks, shocked. "It wouldn't be her, would it?!". Her being ... we don't know but we can guess! 
JoAnne: They use radiant heat under the floors. Apparently this hanok was retrofitted with gas heat? 
kakashi: Ha! You're so smart!!!! 
Halmoni Park Soo-mi goes to the museum in person after she hears from her older DIL that the younger DIL went. Il-hwa only does things if they benefit her, we learn. Yeah, EVIL. She actually wanted to bribe the judges for the upcoming competition, it seems. Halmoni is very, very biased towards her older DIL. Not good. Of course, she must DIE. Ah, I hate these timid women, I really do. And where is Kim Ji-hoon??! 
JoAnne: I don't mind her.
Sad kiddo with mommy issues (the girl version) is promised Jjajangmyeon because her father also needs to abandon her. She runs back to Bi Sool Chae and finds it abandoned. Kid who is possible Kim Ji-hoon but we are not sure yet is also running there, crying, remembering his mother - who was first DIL Ok-soo's sister? (save me! This is so complicated!!!) Eun-bi comes out and invites the boy to have noodles with her. He doesn't want to though and because he suddenly steps out onto the street, the delivery man who is just then coming on his bike falls ... much worse though are the noodles that are now on the street. The girl cries, the boy runs. 
JoAnne: I'm just... I mean... these are just noodles, kids.
SooBong gets an offer to become Director at an Arts Center in California. And then, we see that First Son HeeBong works for Possibly-KimJiHoon's Daddy. Oh wait ... he is ALSO of this family? I'm royally confused at this stage. His wife was the sister of first daughter-in-law, so what does that make him to the husband of his late wife's sister? Anyway, I understand that he wants to keep his new love a secret from HeeBong's wife Ok-soo. Alright, I now have confirmation .... sad little boy is INDEED young Kim Ji-hoon! Meet Jae-hwa! KimJiCap powers, engage!!!
JoAnne: Ok, here's how it goes. Grandma has two sons, married to the above ladies. The first daughter in law (the nice one) had a sister who died recently. She was the wife of the mean dad with the crying dress sniffing noodle killing boy. First Daughter in Law's husband works for the mean dad. And that kid down there? That is not the crying dress sniffing kid, although that is ALSO mean dad's son. He's the illegitimate one, but we don't know that yet.

PS: That gif up there looks like he needs to pee, badly.
kakashi: He is not a very good actor, sadly :( 
Jae-hee, not Jae-hwa
And right then, we meet Jae-hee, Jae-hwa's future rival (I guess). Are they brothers? Half-brothers? Oh wait ... so he is the kid of the new flame? Oh ... or was she Kim Ji-hoon's Daddy's mistress?! Kids are really mean to him because of his mother ... who is Geum Bo Ra as Hwa Yun. It's a "I Summon You, Gold"-reunion! OMG! Please no! Anyway, they're really poor and pitiable and she wears terrible, terrible make-up. 
JoAnne: Because she's the dim-witted slutty mistress of the recently widowed mean dad. And the kid with the silly blond extensions is their son, plus she's massively pregnant (at the age of 51). I kinda like her.
I am sorry guys, there's more people you have to meet still. Told you this was like Age of Feeling, possibly worse. There's the girl-nemesis too, Yun Min Jung. She is poor but pretends to be rich ... her mother cleans for ... Kim Ji-hoon's Daddy? I think so. Or not? Does she clean? No, she delivers things, it seems. Oh, and she is a maid as well, so she DOES clean. Of course, she is dressed in the WORST possible clothes on this planet. And her daughter is a bitch. Meet future Second Lead!
JoAnne: That child needs to be spanked, and her mother is hilarious. I'm not at all clear on who she works for, though.
kakashi: Probably everbody in Seoul
Oh wait ... Mistress is pregnant?! Wow. They move in with Lee Dong-hoo and young Kim Ji-hoon whom I will have to call Jae-hwa from now on, I guess. Oh YIKES, sorry Jae-hwa. This is a wretched fate you have there ... and waitasecond ... are they really half-brothers? So did Evil Daddy stick his Willy into Pockets it shouldn't have gone?
JoAnne: So the dad doesn't say anything to anyone, just moves this woman and this kid in with this grieving child? Has them show up at the house and isn't even there? I feel bad for this boy, but still, he cries too much already.
Future Kim Ji-hoon, I mean Jae-hwa, who is crying all the time
All of a sudden, Eun-bi is now called Bo-ri. I'm glad and confused at the same time. (My subs started calling her EunMi, but I never heard Bo Ri - Oh, the mother still says Eun-bi, but the subs says Bo-ri). Anyway, In-hwa overhears her husband ask his mother to make sure she doesn't becomes the successor because he wants to go to America. He's had it with the sewing. But Halmoni doesn't approve. Hey, I thought Soo Bong was kind, but he is not at all: he wants to make his wife give up sewing and doesn't support her at all. Oh, but does the drama want to make us believe he is a good guy because he wants her to give up sewing for her daughter and the family? If he wants to go to the USA, In-hwa says, he has to go alone. Little Eun-bi/Bo-ri hears it all.
JoAnne: Yeah, Dad's kind of a dick too.
The demure first daughter-in-law makes me really aggressive, I'm sorry. She says she would have given up stitching for her husband. Bleh, you IDIOT. In-hwa, who seems to have been the one to have poisoned her own husband in order to speed up marriage with him, him being the son of Sewing Queen, and her wanting nothing ELSE in life but to be a Sewing Queen herself, listens to her conversation with Halmoni and her strong bias towards that DIL. Believing Halmoni has already chosen the Demure One as her successor, In-hwa goes into Ok-soo's room, takes out all the cloth her SIL (who is the much slower sewer) has prepared and burns it. The next day, the servant Park Jong Ha (Jun In Taek) helps to help her hide her crime. 
JoAnne: I believe it was here that I decided this is Baker King Kim Tak Gu with dresses.
But she isn't safe yet ... her own husband tells Halmoni that Ok-soo's clothes have been stolen; and everybody looks at In-hwa, the only one that could have possibly done this.
JoAnne: I can't really fault him for that, though, can you?  Should he have kept quiet out of loyalty even though she was clearly wrong?
kakashi: No, but he's a dick - he hates his wife and that is never a good thing


This is ... not how I imagined my next KimJiCap project ...... and this is NOTHING like the teaser we have seen! This is ... a drama about an über-ambitious seamstress? Huh. Well. Just hurry up with the set-up, okay, drama? A few things that I notice: the kid actors aren't very good, especially the young Kim Ji-hoon. It makes me anticipate the REAL Kim Ji-hoon so much more. Also, the two sister-in-laws are much too old for these roles. Sorry. I'm not ageist or anything. But these women are both in the mid-50s in real life, and even though they're beautiful, it just doesn't make any SENSE. 
JoAnne: It's an all out fight to a finished garment in the high stakes world of traditional haberdashery.
kakashi: The things I do for you, Kim Ji-hoon...
JoAnne: I mean he's cute and all, but I can't even say I'm doing it for him.
kakashi: I know *heart-heart-heart* ... you're doing it for me!!! 

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