The Disguiser 伪装者 - Episode 34 (Recap)

Another really, really tough episode to watch (though so much brilliant acting in it!). Big Sis' emotional break-down in the courtyard of Division 76 is one of my "favorite" scenes in the whole drama. And finally, we're starting to realize what is being played. This plan has about 1000 layers but if I'm not thoroughly mistaken, I think it's moving exactly where Ming Lou et al. want it to move. But damn, the risk!!!
Holy shit, Kakashi. Ho-ly shit.
Eleanor: I've said this before, but I think that the true star of this show is Jin Dong. He is utterly phenomenal in this show. Of course Liu Min Tao is AMAZING AMAZING in this episode and Hu Ge and Wang much amazingness!

Episode 34

Liang is deep in thought when Zhu Hui Yin (the braided double spy) comes in and addresses him. He jumps. Haha. But she has a message from Ah Cheng for him! (he secretly pressed it into her hand when she walked past him in the corridor). It reads: "Immediately check Ming Tai's noodle factory".
I forget. Is she a double-agent for them or against them? Is her involvement here her role in the plan, or them using her for the plan?
From everything we've seen so far, she's a double agent on Ming Lou and Ming Cheng's side. 
Liang is a bit reluctant to trust this "luck" - but the logic that he should get some of the credit too convinces him. He quickly put s a pictures of his wife and kid away that is lying on the table and then gathers his men.
That looks like it came out of the world's biggest fortune cookie.
Haha. Though fortune cookies are an American thing...not really a Chinese thing...(maybe a Japanese thing...maybe, depending on who you talk to).

Ming Tai is still out of it in the dungeons, now hallucinating. He sees himself standing in the deserted streets of Shanghai ... and then visiting scenes of his old life. Happy scenes, with him, Guo and Manli. Him, kissing Trainwreck. Him and his family, eating and laughing. His teacher walking away from him at the military school.
How long are they going to let this go on?
Poor Ming Tai - his world has really been shattered this past little while. I'm guessing some PTSD. 
Look how amazingly white his shirt is! 
In the here and now, he opens his eyes. This man is not broken. But is he fully lucid? He asks Wang Manchun why his teacher sold him out. She says it's because of Yu Manli's copy of the codebook. He agrees: it's very important - hers is real, Guo's was fake. She asks who his superior is ... and then whether it's Ming Lou. All Ming Tai stammers is this, however: "Ming Lou is my elder brother".
Do you think he's figured out that they let this happen to him?
I think that even if he has figured it out, he trusts them - that and he knows Manchun is the enemy, not Ming Lou. 
Enraged, she pulls her gun and aims it at his forehead. She repeats her question. Maybe not exactly as planned, Ming Tai starts begging her to kill him.
So wait...does she love Ming Lou or does she want to ruin him? Because it looks like she's hoping to find out he's a spy.
I think she wants to make sure he's not a spy...even though she loves him, I don't think she 100% trusts him. 
Liang is at the noodle factory. His men ransack it all and find some juicy telegraph records - and a broadcasting station. Liang is asking himself what we're all asking ourselves: what is Ah Cheng doing?!
Well, I was asking myself if even one noodle had ever actually been made in that factory, but then after that I did think 'What the HELL, Ah Cheng?'
Keep calm and trust Ming Lou. I'm just going to repeat that over and over otherwise I'll go crazy I think. 
He then goes back and reports all of this to Tengtian. He can't hide his glee. The telegraphs - that need some decoding - are conversations with Battle Zone Division 3 about the secret code book. Of course they are. Wang Manchun, who happens to come in that very moment (see below: reaction gif) has a ridiculous rage fit when she hears about Liang's little adventure. They get into a petty little fight and Tengtian shouts at them to stop, before leaving the room in a huff, closely followed by them. Left alone, Ming Lou looks a tiny little bit smug about how things are going...
She is one ridiculous, crazy bitch. I hope he personally removes all ten fingernails, all ten toenails, each eyelash, and all of her teeth. Then lets Ming Jing feed them to her as she describes in great detail his eventual wedding to the girl Killer Wang hated most in high school. On random days, Big Sis can give Killer an enema made up of champagne and wedding cake from Ming Lou's ceremony.
Haha. Well if anyone needs someone in charge of their torture division, I think Jo might be good to hire...Ming Lou! I don't know how he keeps thing together sometimes. Hats off to you sir. 
Tengtian makes Manchun apologize to Liang (ohhh, he's enjoying himself)... and him hand all the info he collected over to her. Ahahaha. She wins.
They should spend eternity in a cell big enough for one person. Together.
Haha. She'd kill him too quickly. 
And then, Ming Jing arrives. Manchun makes sure she is let in ... of course, because she has special plans. Stone-faced, Ming Lou watches from the window. Manchun enjoys seeing Ming Jing in pain s.o. m.u.c.h. Casually, she mentions torturing Ming Tai ... and shows Big Sis the blood that is "all over" her good shoes. And: she'll consider letting her see him if she cleans them for her.
You fucking crazy ass bitch. Why would you not know that Ming Lou would see this? How would you not think that this would kill any chance you ever had?
Because she is exactly that: crazy. I don't think she has truly thought this through logically - unless she's trying to prove Ming Lou's loyalty to the Japanese. Ming Jing though, I want to punch Manchun and hurt her so that she'll never move again for what she's doing to Ming Jing. 
Ming Jing might be a very proud woman - but her love for Ming Tai beats everything. She falls on her knees... and starts cleaning the blood off Manchun's shoes with her elegant coat. Manchun lets her know that she is waiting for her to die so that she can marry Ming Lou. And she has a present for her, as Ming Lou's big sis. And she drops a bloody handkerchief (one she made for Ming Lou; Ming Jing cut it apart). Inside: Ming Tai's fingernails. Ming Jing is sobbing and Manchun continues rubbing it in. How Ming Tai has called for his mother and his sister, how Big Sis cannot save him. And those nails? The only thing she'll get of his dead body.
Hey kids, if you can't marry the man you like because your parents killed his parents, try torturing his baby brother. I bet that will change his mind! And if not, man, it will really show his sister how wrong she was to stand in the way of true love!
Yeah, before this episode, I could still sort of sympathise with Manchun occasionally, now never again. She's gone to far. If me as a viewer feels so strongly about her, I can't even imagine how Ming Lou and Ming Jing feel. She is vile. Vile. Vile.  
Ouf, her grief gets me in the heart...
I have to say, this is really hard.  Especially when I consider that it SEEMS that the ultimate goal of the plan (this week) is to put Ming Lou beyond suspicion. Why? Why now? Did they forget to air the episode that showed the Japanese closing in on him? Seems like a really high cost to pay for something 'just in case.'
I don't think that's the ultimate goal. I think it's maybe part of it, but I also part of it is a plan to keep Ming Tai safe, though how seems completely inconceivable at this moment. 

Tengtian moves to the next stage now and calls Ming Lou down, to "handle the situation" of this woman making such a ruckus at a government building. It's now pouring rain (like here for the last 4 weeks) and Ming Jing is sitting in the middle of the courtyard, sobbing loudly. Ah Cheng runs to her and covers her with his coat, helping her up (I admit: I ship them a little). Ming Lou is being handed an umbrella and signalled to make a move.
I'm so far from shipping them I might as well be on a train racing away from the ocean and through the Sahara, and if Ming Jing doesn't punch Ming Lou in the face I will be very surprised.
Haha. I'm with you Kakashi, I ship them a little too. This scene broke my heart into a million pieces. 
It takes seemingly forever for Ming Lou to get there. He seems lost for words, but then says: "Big Sister, how are you?". Seriously, Ming Lou?! He assures her he will find "a way", but she's done believing him ... she hits him, shows him Ming Tai's fingernails, sobs and sobs. He tries to calm her, tells her to go home, and wait for a message from him. Do you listen, Ming Jing?! No. But she slaps him. With as much strength as she can muster.
Not surprised.
I want to kill Manchun. So badly. 
The onlookers seem to think this is going exactly where they want it to go ... and yes. Ming Jing rages on against Ming Lou and his opportunism, and then she says: "What did you tell me at home? You said you are... " but Ming Lou hits her, forcefully. To shut her up. And he tells her to stop making so much trouble.
Oh! surprised! Plus I have to admit to a bit of being pissed off at Ming Jing. Who the fuck did she think she was, anyway, that she could just march in there and demand her brother back like that? Of course you would want to, anyone would want to - and yes others would go and beg and plead, too - but there was something so imperious about her demands initially, as if they should be met because of who she is. Not simply pleas for some wrong to be corrected, but outrage that anyone would dare touch her brother. That attitude angers me.
I'm not super happy, or happy at all that Ming Lou hit her, but I think that he did it to stop her from incriminating him in some way. I think he was trying to avoid her being able to come here to Division 76 before actually, but Manchun had other ideas. I think that this situation might have gone a little better if they actually let Ming Jing in on a few more details. I wonder sometimes as well if the imperiousness is a bit of an goes against many of her actions. 
She denounces him as her brother - but he only scoffs at that. She has to wake up to reality: he is her brother by blood. Ming Tai on the other hand is "someone from nowhere", who even tried to kill him. Ah, she did not know? Well, it's the truth. It's her fault for pampering him like he's still a baby, letting him do whatever he wants. Ming Tai has dragged the Ming family into huge trouble. If she cares nothing for him, Ming Lou, and nothing for the Ming family's name, Ming Tai may be saved. Of course, she will not make this choice ... I mean, how could she? Ming Lou orders Ah Cheng to take her home.
I actually thought she would, though. (And yes even I felt the click of that part of the plan falling into place. It definitely hit the mark with his audience.)
Completely a tangent here, but I hope those suits are not ruined from the water. 
Important question: Why does it rain so much harder where Ah Cheng and Ming Jing stand than where Ming Lou stands?!
It's hotter in hell, so the water evaporates.
Editing. The people holding the hoses for each cut weren't showering the same amount of water on them and it wasn't accounted for with continuity in editing. 

Also: Jin Dong looks good, all wet.
Yes. Yes he does.
Yup. That he does. 
Manchun thinks so too and runs to him, but he tells her not to touch him - he wants neither sympathy nor pity. (Probably his only honest, unguarded reaction to any of this. God I hope so anyway.) (that and he also probably wants to stab her in the heart right now) She is delulu though and thinks he must realize now that in this world, he and she are the only ones that love each other sincerely. She wants to be with him forever. He looks at her with so many emotions flickering across his face, then saying that he has no future, that his career is finished. But she doesn't care. He is everything for her. And they hug. You utter fool, woman.
Wow...and he actually doesn't throw up down her back, either. Do you think she actually smells like sulphur? You know how this ends for him, right? When the war is over, he retires to the countryside and drinks himself into a stupor for a few years. One day, he'll just shoot himself in the head. I hope he leaves a note that says 'I would rather die than spend one more minute of my life on the same planet as you.'
Yeah, the Ming Brothers are going to need some serious help with PTSD after all this is done. 
The pair is being watched from an upstairs window by Liang ... who remarks to braided double spy that this is what the "Wang lady" is after, apparently. What a method to chase after a man.
I hope some part of this plan is to make her look like the ridiculously obsessed teenager she apparently is.
Does she also not realise how unprofessional this makes her look to everyone else? That's going to come back and bite her later on I'm sure. 

That night (Ming Lou is out partying with Manchun), Ah Cheng visits Liang at his house. He has a favor to ask: Kill Ming Tai. Uhm WHAT NOW?! Liang doesn't get it and neither do I, but Liang is fishing for info again, asking whether Ming Tai, too, is in KMT. No, he's not, says Ah Cheng, he's a Communist. Who wanted to kill Big Bro. And he's super dangerous: he will try to negotiate with Manchun and will rat them all out.
Man, they are really pushing it. Here's what I've got at this point:  
Ming Lou: Hey, they might think I'm not what I say I am, someday.
Ah Cheng: We should do something about that. And if we can screw over my crazy foster mother at the same time, cool.
Ming Lou: Yeah...I was thinking we could fake out Manchun, too. We'll have to risk Ming Tai's life. We could have to kill off a few people, too.
Ah Cheng: Yeah, but an ounce of prevention...
Ming Lou: GMTA, dude! So I was thinking we could do this whole thing with fake codebooks...
The fake codebooks isn't them, that's Crazy Wang - they're just trying to pick up the pieces, make sure their covers aren't blown, and save Ming Tai from Manchun who is about to kill him. 
Awwww, Liang really, really doesn't want to do this. But Ah Cheng knows how to convince him ... among other things by handing him a document proving that Ming Tai is a communist. It's a confession, with his fingerprint. That he takes to Tengtian ... and tells him Manchun never wanted to hand it to him. Ming Tai confessed everything - but Manchun is covering up the truth. Why? because Manchun is after one thing only: Ming Lou. So she will never truly hurt Ming Tai. She is lying to him.
Ripping out your fingernails doesn't count, I guess? Just have a drink on the New Year and let bygones be bygones? Everyone happy around the family dinner table?
Oh I don't doubt she'd kill Ming Tai, it's just what they're telling Tengtian. 


Ohhhh, wait a minute!!! Cleeeeeeever, clever, clever. This plan is actually directed against Manchun? At least partially, it seems, and I also think it's working. Liang is playing along happily because he absolutely detests Manchun and he isn't even lying when he says that one of her prime reasons for doing what she's doing is Ming Lou. The rest is bullshit, however. She very happily would kill Ming Tai and Ming Jing with her bare hands, because she's a raging lunatic. She enjoys every minute of inflicting pain and after this episode, I am looking forward to what's coming for her.
I believe you know my feelings on the subject.
What you all said. 

Now, about that "Ming Tai must die" part. We all know that Ming Tai will not die (yet?). And we know Ah Cheng would never truly want Ming Tai to die. So this will be some kind of trick, right? I think I know where this is going... there is only one reason why you make people fake-die.
So they can show up in the middle of the night in your bedroom as a 'ghost' and scare you to death like the goddamn crazy-ass fucktard that you are?
To save them of course. If they're dead, well then no one will look for them again. If they escape, then people will. It's the only sure way. 

I just fear that many more hearts will be broken (including mine) until we get to the bottom of this.
I'm too mad to be heartbroken. I've decided that in addition to the things I listed above, Manchun should be forced to undergo weekly Brazilians with underheated wax. One hair at a time. By Jing. Or maybe Liang.
As I noted before, anyone in need of a torture specialist? Jo seems to be the woman for that. Jo, don't turn into Manchun! ;) There is a part of me that wonders if they aren't going to fake Ming Tai's death. He's not really going to get killed, is he?