CUBIC (A Snarkcap) -- Episode 9

Trotwood: We are back. I don't know for how long though. We may be doing eps every other month tops now that the slow season has ended, and I'm supposed to start recapping another Japanese drama soon. It's been seven months since we posted the last Cubic snarkcap and 6 months since I drafted this one--so long that I had to go back and review the key terms from the preface, so I knew what I was talking about. It's just as crazy as I remembered, but I've seen lots and lots of tassel earrings in stores now. Mei Jin was apparently very fashion forward.
Shuk: So now we know of at least one crazy bad guy in suspect couture. And one useless guy in shiny suits. What more delights await us?

Fake Title: From Funeral to Stockholm Syndrome, the Many Sides of Cubic

We open this episode with Bai Ling’s funeral, which would be lovely and sad if it weren’t for Yong Wen putting on the fake broken-hearted tears. Everyone seems moved by this because . . . why not? Bai Ling was one of the few (only) purely decent people in this show. (Which is why she had to die.)

While they walk away, with Mei Jin’s funeral tassel earrings blowing in the breeze, Mei Jin voices her suspicions about Bai Ling’s suicide. She doesn’t believe it was suicide because she was just talking to Bai Ling a couple of days ago, and BL seemed happy and preparing to have a baby (I don’t know if this means she was pregnant or trying to get pregnant—I’m going for the second option, since Uncle Flock would’ve been bragging about a pregnancy). It doesn’t make sense to her that a reasonable woman like Bai Ling would do that over another woman.
First, I would like to point out that Uncle Flock was especially flocked in this scene. I think he added extra flock out of sorrow.... or to match his pimping all-white ensemble. Second, was she supposedly suicidal because her creepy hubby was cheating?
Yep, that's the official story. Personally, it's easier to believe that she killed herself because he wouldn't accept any fashion advice from her.

LLS isn’t convinced by this argument because he has this skewed attitude about women (after all, his mother shot herself in the head); he believes that jealous women are capable of anything. For once, I can see LLS's point. That is a valid assumption based on his crazy mom history. Both Mei Jin and I roll our eyes at that. Interestingly, Mei Jin is suspicious of Yong Wen, but while we are all screaming at LLS to listen to her, Jongsing shows up and awkwardly interrupts them, asking to speak to LLS and trying to pretend that he is oblivious to Mei Jin. She teases him before she goes, calling him “Jongsing, the cold-hearted,” and he can barely swallow. Poor Jongsing.
I'm totally distracted by those weird gloves MJ is wearing. It's just four leather fingers and a thumb with a scrap of palm. It looks like her hand is forced into Italian.

When Jongsing and LLs are alone, JS tells his boss that he’s heard that people are looking for Cubic, so they should tell Nark about the situation. LLS is worried that she is in danger and can’t decide whether telling her about Cubic will put her in more danger or not.  Jongsing, wise as ever, tells him that if they don’t keep her in the loop, she will probably do things on her own anyway, so LLS agrees to tell her. He asks Jongsing to send her to the office later and to also take Mei Jin home. This gives Jongsing pause. He tries to come up with a non-obvious ways to get out of this, but since he won’t/can’t tell LLS the truth when LLS asks him directly what is wrong, he is stuck with this task. Poor Jongsing.
I think Jongsing needs his own "poor Jongsing" theme music for whenever he is forced to pine from afar...or close by as the case may be.
Cue awkward elevator ride up to Mei Jin’s apartment. Seriously, this is the slowest elevator or the tallest building on the planet. You can feel Jongsing trying hard not to look at her or even remember that she is standing next to him. While Mei Jin stares at him and cozies up to him just to make him more embarrassed. He finally asks her why she keeps staring at him, and she tells him that she’s wondering what he’s thinking about. She guesses (correctly, although she doesn’t know it) that he’s thinking about her and wondering if she is lonely living alone. Of course, he denies this. So she guesses that he does have someone and wonders whether he is gay or if he has a girl.
She has to know he's into her, just by his actions. She should just put him out of his misery and do her darndest to make him crack a grin.

She finally snatches his phone to see if he has pictures of his girlfriend on it. He desperately tries to get it back, but she just teases him, getting more and more curious because of his desperation. In fact, the only way she gets him to back off is because she threatens to hug him if he doesn’t let her look. She finds picture after picture after picture of herself on his phone. Awkward! 

She confronts him about whether he has a secret crush on her. Of course, he denies this and makes up some lame story about how he took the pictures for LLS. (rolling my eyes, partly at this lie, partly because she wants to believe that LLS wants pictures of her, and partly at the sudden need for show to have Italian accordion music as the background for this scene.) She pretends to be sad about him not having a crush on her, but I think she just likes teasing him. He deletes all the pictures. Poor Jongsing.
If he had only said, "Yes, I want to know the color of your underwear and I want to know NOW!", then swept her in his arms and strolled to the bedroom.
Nark meets with LLS, and the mafia/principal tells her the Cubic cover story and that people are now looking for Cubic, so she needs to pretend that she knows nothing. She agrees but also understands that Cubic is a very important figure. She asks him if they can’t save Meena by saying that Meena is Cubic’s woman. He looks at her admiringly and says that she’s very determined. He asks her what she would do if he says no, and she comes back to asserting that this would prove that he’s a pervert. He tries to stay mad, but when she turns her back on him and makes all sorts of scrunchy faces, it’s clear that he thinks she is adorable.
They are kind of cute now that he isn't glowering at her all the time.
The next thing we know, we see Puey In, in one of the shiniest suits I’ve seen, exclaiming incredulously over the idea that Meena is Cubic’s woman. He doesn’t believe LLS and even says he wants the 20 million then if Cubic wants her so badly. LLS hands him over a suitcase with the money, which surprises our shiny little man, but then he thinks that Meena must be worth more than that. He also doesn’t believe that Cubic exists. He thinks LLS just wants Meena for himself, so he says he wants either 100 million or he wants to meet Cubic in person in 3 days. LLS is surprised that Puey In isn’t as stupid as he thought. 
You can't blame him for being suspicious since LLS is not one to don shining armor and stand up for woman's rights. Hahaha. Literally just laughed out loud at the thought of LLS being at a feminist rally. #FreeTheMistresses
Meena is very upset when she finds out about the 100 million and begs Nark not to abandon her. Nark promises but doesn’t seem to have much of an idea about how to save Meena. She begs Danny to help her, but he doesn’t have that kind of money and can’t understand why she’d go out of her way to help someone not related to her. But Nark believes she has to because she promised Meena, who is also a young Thai woman in a foreign land. He just tells her that since she is Cubic, she should just use her brains to figure something out. She spends the next day trying to come up with a plan. We watch her welding (yes, that is one of her part-time jobs) and riding her bike to deliveries. She finally shows up at LL’s office to tell him they just need to admit that she’s Cubic.
This is the best that this "brilliant" mind can come with??

LLS disagrees. He tells her that he has a plan, but she needs to come closer so he can whisper it to her. Pfft. It takes forever for her to inch closer—now worried that there might be spies listening in even in his office/suite—and when she kneels next to him with her eyes closed, he can’t help himself and leans in to kiss her cheek. However, his nose bumps into her first, so he covers with an apology that his nose is big and starts whispering in her ear.
Big nose, big........?
LLS is the worst player ever. That boy has no moves.
We hear nothing of this plan only their theme song (TS), but she seems to like what she hears because she nods eagerly throughout. Once he finishes, they gaze at each other closely for a long time. He looks at her with adoration, but I can’t tell how she is looking at him—more like she can’t figure him out. He finally says to her that she hasn’t said whether it is a good plan or not; she nods, and he proceeds to lean in to kiss her, but she just keep leaning back until she falls because SHE STILL CAN’T FIGURE OUT THAT HE IS NOT TRYING TO KILL HER!! Jeez, she is slow. He pulls this off by saying that she smells and should clean up before coming instead of coming straight from work. She leaves in a huff but not before sniffing her armpits before she leaves his suite. He just smiles to himself.
LLS calls Danny while Danny is walking through the night streets of Taiwan-cough-Hong Kong (I wonder where this is actually; it's pretty). He needs him because he plans to have Danny be Cubic. After all, Danny knows the real story. After all, Danny knows the real story. Danny teases him for coming to him begging, but LLS says he will pay him and that if he doesn’t help, Nark will be in trouble. Danny agrees but not without more taunting that LLS must really be worried about his debtor. LLS grits his teeth. He needs Danny, so he’ll put up with it.
I like that Danny will have something to do other than be Nark's confidant. I kind of wish there was an off-shoot drama. The adventures of a gun running Danny. Student by day, gun kingpin by night.
I'm glad Danny gets more of a story than just snarking school friend. And he gets a Telephone Call Orbital Camera Stare! That deserves a gif. But then, so does LLS's sofa styling.

We are all back to our favorite Men on Stairs spot the next day. Jongsing is worried about the plan and that it can cause trouble in the relationship with Puey Lin in the future, but LLS insists on going ahead because he “owes the kid.”  However, Jongsing makes a good point. If LLS really wants to pay her back, he should cancel her debt and let her go back to Thailand. LLS insists that 20 million is a lot of money that her father owes. Pfft. We just saw you offer a suitcase with that amount to Puey In for Meena.
Jongsing knows that the money isn’t the point really and asks him if he just doesn’t want to give up Nark. Of course, LLS completely denies that he has any feelings for Nark, but it’s clear Jongsing knows better. He lets it go, but still warns about the already tense relationship with Puey In. LLS instead keeps bringing up what he “owes that girl” asking whether Jongsing understands that it’s not because he likes “that girl.” After LLS leaves the stairs, Jongsing barely keeps a straight face and shakes his head over LLS’s refusal to admit his feelings.
I thought that LLS was coming around to admitting that he is in a one-sided love situation. The fact that he tried to smooch her less than 24 hours ago seems to indicate that he does, indeed, want to have relations with "that girl".
I am constantly surprised by these two supposed really intelligent people. Is it possible for two different people to have an astronomical IQ and an abysmal EQ at the same time? These two are clearly meant for each other.
Flock alert! Flock alert! Uncle Flock is in his house having fond memories of Bai Ling to some haunting children caroling-type music. Poor man. He really does miss her. Who wouldn’t? Oh yeah. Her husband, the man who killed her. While looking at Uncle Flock mourning Bai Ling, Yong Wen is smirking and thinking about the memory of shooting her at point blank range. When Uncle Flock sees YW, he pretends to be sad though while reminding Uncle Flock about an important meeting the next day;  UF decides to send YW to it in his place. YW starts talking about his own grief and how he doesn’t want to go on living (blah blah blah, murdering scumbag liar), but UF insists that he take care of himself, too, because YW is the only family he has left.  Aw. Uncle could be the poster boy for verklempt flocking in this scene. When they hug, YW has a sleezy triumphant smile on his face. I wouldn’t have been surprised if he stabbed him in the back right then.
I think I would be a lousy nang'rai. I don't think my face is flexible enough to do all those crazy movements during a camera closeup.
The next scene has YW in his own shiny suit walking through some warehouse type place to talk to his own minions. There is a man with his head in a bag tied to a chair who is introduced by one of the minions as Cubic. Supposedly, they found him in a bar trying to pick up a woman by saying he’s Cubic. 

Yong Wen takes head minion’s gun and walks away only to turn and shoot the fake Cubic. The minions are all shocked, but he just yells at them to be able to tell the difference between the real Cubic and a guy who just wants to get women to sleep with him. They are all pretty shaken by the shooting, which makes me question their level of expertise. But then again, all of them together weren’t able to capture Chin Fu. Still, Yong Wen does offer a million dollar reward for the first person to find Cubic.
I laughed at their surprise and overacted fear. I mean, he took the gun. Did they think he wanted to wave it in the air for exercise or something?
"I'm going to look for some stairs to walk down! Who is with me!?"

We return to LLS’s offices where there is lots of dramatic music while Meena and LLS stare at each other across a table in a room that looks like it’s set up for some sort of conference meeting.  Puey In struts in, doesn’t see anyone and smirks, thinking that LLS is giving Meena to him because he won’t pay the 100 million. He grabs her and starts to leave, and she begs LLS to save her. They’re interrupted by someone shouting at PI to let her go, and who do we have but Danny strutting in and claiming to be Cubic. I don’t blame Puey In for not believing him. He’s wearing his regular clothes—boots, jeans, and beanie—who would think this teenager was a mastermind? But then again, we are supposed to believe that Nark is a mastermind, so . . .
Danny takes credit for setting up the meeting between Nark and his dad and for LLS’s escape from the assassination attempt. Meena chimes in that Danny was the person who gave her the idea to slit her wrists, so she could escape from the hospital and that he promised to take her back to Thailand. Puey In looks hurt/sad/struck (?) by this comment. He is starting to believe. Nark has been looking on from a hiding place, begging for him to fall for this. PI looks like he believes them, so Danny claims his woman and asks Meena to come to him. However, just as she starts towards him, PI grabs her and says that he doesn’t have to listen to Cubic and starts dragging her out.
Puey's inner caveman is coming forth. Oh wait, that is just his normal self.

Meena begs for help, so LLS steps in and the absolutely corniest fight ensues. I can’t even begin to describe how bad this fight is and how the swelling music is begging for us to take this all seriously, but I just can’t.
First of all, we all know that LLS is stronger than PI who lost to a girl with a plunger. The only thing interesting about this fight is that when it’s over with PI lying on the floor and LLS about to deliver a final blow, Meena begs him to stop. In fact, not only does she tell him to stop since PI can’t beat him, she kneels by PI’s side calling to him to wake up. Sigh.
Ugh. God save us from idiot women. She deserves what she gets.
LLS looks over his shoulder at Nark, who is very excited that he won the fight and is grinning at him like a loon. He looks pleased when she tells him that he’s awesome, and then he walks out while Danny and Nark shake their heads over Meena’s concern for PI.
As do I, my friend. As do I.

Next we get Nark and Danny sipping juice and discussing what just happened. Danny brags about getting LLS to beg him for his help because he’s bothered that Nark keeps praising LLS for thinking to peg Danny as Cubic. She mollifies him by promising to treat him to a good dinner. LLS comes in with his sweater/suspender/scarf relaxing at home outfit and thanks Danny, offering even to shake his hand (though to be fair, he says all of this with very little grace). Danny warns him that he didn’t do it to help him but to help protect a young girl from falling into the hands of a perverted mafia boss, a clear dig at LLS. They discuss what they should do with Meena, but much of this conversation is really about us seeing how LLS can’t stand the fact that Nark is close to Danny and hates the idea that she plans to treat Danny to a meal out.
Danny is smarter about relationships than these two combined. And I think he actually enjoys jerking both of their chains about it. Snarky teenage beanie-headed Cupid.
Danny leaves to wait for Nark, but LLS reminds her that he hasn’t forgotten about the money she owes him and expects her to work tonight. Nark is furious when she tells Danny, but she doesn’t believe Danny when he tells her that LLS is jealous. Still, she doesn’t see the look on LLS’s face when he comes out of the office to see her hugging Danny to convince him that she does plan on treating him to dinner and to thank him. He just reminds her of the work. Once she’s gone back inside, however, Danny lets our favorite mafia/principal know that he knows what LLS is thinking. I’d buy this whole interchange a lot more if Danny didn’t do a whole boyband dancing thing when he was walking away from LLS.
Hahahaha. Was Danny a frustrated idol in a previous life?
I thought maybe he was infected with St Vitus' Dance.
LLS has ordered a major spread with all sorts of dishes for dinner and tells Nark that she needs to eat before they can talk about work. At first she just wants to get to business, but she can’t resist all that food. Anyway, they sit together, and he starts serving her food. He not only puts food on her plate but puts soup in a bowl for her. She’s a bit embarrassed by this and tells him that she can get her own soup. She takes it though when he asks if she can’t swallow it just because he served it. The food is clearly very good, and she starts to enjoy it. He clearly is enjoying eating with her and watching her enjoy the food.  He even tells her that watching her eat makes the food seem like it’s delicious. 
Even if he can't say the "L" word, he knows how to make her smile - food! So he's already getting familiar and comfortable with this strange not-quite-a-woman.
He offers to take her to eat at a place that has really really good food tomorrow, and she’s excited at first, but then declines because she needs to work. This frustrates him, and he complains that all she talks about is working. But dude, you’re the one that keeps bringing up her debt! Anyway, he offers to reduce her debt if she comes with him to this place to eat. She’s excited (who wouldn’t be at this offer), he’s pleased, and their theme song plays over and over and over and over again.
However, right in the middle of this love fest comes our poor second lead. Mei Jin walks in on this dinner, and she’s clearly surprised; LLS never eats with anyone except her or Jongsing. She’s not mad, just perplexed. Nark gets up to get a place setting for her, but LLS does not look happy to see Mei Jin at all. He keeps eating and his stone mask is back in place. When she asks about Nark’s presence, he just says that he’s really busy and decided to talk about work to Nark over dinner to save time. He actually looks sad when Nark shows up to clear her spot and set up a new setting for Mei Jin.
She's a beautiful cock-block. But really, he needs to redefine what tier of relationship MJ is. And he needs to clearly communicate with all parties. I'm guessing, however, that we will get none of this. Boo.
Nark picks up her bowl and her books, telling them to enjoy their meal. Mei Jin asks her why she isn’t staying, but Nark says that she is full already and has to get to work. When she leaves, Mei Jin starts putting food on LLS’s plate and serving him soup. She even gets up to kiss him on the cheek. Nark watches this all with stars in her eyes. It’s like she sees them as this ideal beautiful couple, which is probably why it doesn’t occur to her at all that LLS is falling for her instead of Mei Jin. His face though throughout all of this is stone cold—well except when he sees her watching and she makes kissy faces at him to tease him. Really, she treats him like she’s his younger pesky sister.  
It is scenes like this that make me realize that Nark is not mature enough to be in an adult style committed relationship.
Well, she IS only seventeen. Most girls aren't even close to mature until their mid-20's. I betting Meena Mouse is over 20 years old, and look at the shiny-suit loser she likes.
I'm rolling my eyes. I don't know a 17-year old girl who wouldn't have picked up on this. I don't know a thirteen year old girl who wouldn't have picked up on this.
Later, Nark shows up to give LLS the documents she completed, and Mei Jin is impressed with her speed. Nark just comments that she had to work fast because she has to get back to the construction site before the foreman yells at her. Mei Jin is charmed by Nark. In an alternative universe, she and Nark would be close friends. She even tells LLS that Nark is so hardworking that he should reduce her debt. He tells her—without once taking his eyes off the newspaper he is reading (note: he looked at Nark when she said goodbye) that she should pay off Nark’s debt since she likes her so much. I would’ve died laughing if she actually offered, but she just thinks he’s got a mean mouth and looks at him like he’s just teasing her.
He would have flipped over and knocked himself unconscious on the coffee table, if she had written out that check. Too bad she didn't.
Jongsing comes in at the moment (insert my own internal pining Jongsing music which might sound an awful lot like Lionel Richie's Hello.) and immediately gets nervous when he sees Mei Jin. He actually tries to leave without them seeing him, but LLS calls out to him so he has to turn around.  Mei Jin accuses him of leaving just because he saw her (so true, lady), but he just says he doesn’t want to interrupt but came to get the documents that Nark left. LLS asks him to review the translations, so he nervously sits. Mei Jin remembers the pictures. She asks LLS about them, but of course he doesn’t know anything, so he asks Jongsing. He just tells him that there were some pretty pictures from a photoshoot, but Mei Jin wants to see them so she can show LLS. We all know that Jongsing deleted them, and he tells them that there weren’t that many. Poor Jongsing can’t get out of there fast enough. He says he’ll take the documents to the secretary and departs, but Mei Jin doesn’t understand why he even had the photos. It’s LLS that says that maybe Jongsing is one of her fans, but she scoffs at the idea because her fans are teenagers not old guys like him. He even suggests to Mei Jin that Jongsing might secretly like her, which gives her an idea—a very bad one.
Does he actually know Jongsing likes her? Or is he just making an idle statement? Perhaps I need to learn more of KMuse's LLS eye communication or something, because I can't really tell.
She asks what LLS would do if Jongsing did like her. He calmly keeps reading the paper and says that it would be her business not his. She begins to look worried and asks if he wouldn’t be jealous, but he replies that he wouldn’t be because it would be love and he’d be happy that Jongsing was happy. Now Mei Jin is looking incredulous. I’m looking incredulous. The fly on the wall is looking incredulous. I want him to stop talking. I want them both to stop because LLS doesn’t get at all why this conversation might be a problem. He even goes on to say that if Jongsing wanted her, he’d be happy to give her to him because then she would finally have a man who loved her like she’s always wanted. So much of this is true, but it is very cruel of LLS to say it, and Mei Jin tells him so. He just doesn’t get it. Sigh.
#FreeTheMistresses (Whether they want it or not.)
Of course, Mei Jin stalks out of there in tears only to literally bump into Jongsing in the lobby. She’s furious and tells him exactly what happened. He tries to convince her that LLS was just teasing, but she isn’t dumb. She tells him to tell LLS that she will never come back. He doesn’t have any time to adjust to this news before the secretary comes to tell him that LLS wants to see him.
He is super tense when he goes in. LLS tells him that they need to talk about something important, and Jongsing looks like he is going to faint with relief once he finds out that LLS wants him to find a safe house for Meena. But right when he’s about to go do these things, LLS calls him back to ask about Mei Jin. I’m cringing for poor Jongsing (who is my favorite character in this show—did I say that already? I did? Well I’ll be saying it more before snarkcaps are over).
I was looking for cat toys to throw at my screen during this entire passage.

LLS asks him if Mei Jin told him what they talked about. Jongsing tells him that he shouldn't tease her like that because it hurts her feelings, but LLS assures him that he was completely sincere. He would give up on Mei Jin for Jongsing because Jongsing has been so good and loyal to him all these years. Jongsing looks so uncomfortable with this idea. You know the temptation is great, but he isn’t like LLS. He really loves Mei Jin and doesn’t see her as a commodity that could be given. I don’t think he’d want her that way at all.
Does Lin Lan Ser even see Jongsing as a friend, or a confidant? Or he is just a piece of office equipment? Like Mei Jin is a piece of arm candy? Grr.... 
I think Jongsing is the only person that LLS really likes and cares about. He would give Jongsing anything he asked for I bet partly because JS doesn't ever ask for anything.

Jongsing only gets out of this conversation because LLS doesn’t believe that he could really like a woman like Mei Jin. LLS goes on to say that he had hoped Jongsing did like Mei Jin because he wants Mei Jin to finally leave him (why doesn’t he just say that? Just break up with her, coward!). Jongsing is shocked—so shocked that he just leaves the room without LLS even knowing it. In the lobby, he looks so odd that the secretary asks him is he is okay.
Some days I want to throat-punch LLS. Can he really have a softer emotion like affection or even love? Because the rest of his feelings are clearly cast in quick drying, industrial-grade Portland Pozzolana Cement.
The episode ends with Nark and Meena back in the container apartment. Meena is wondering how Puey In is doing, and Nark can’t understand why she would care about a man who almost raped her. However, Meena isn’t thinking that way. She didn’t want to be owned by him, but she doesn’t think he was ever really going to rape her because if he was going to do it, he would have done it the first day. Nark does a short speech about not falling for mafia guys, but it’s clear that Meena likes Puey In and is worried about him, she just didn’t want to be forced to be his mistress.
And so ends the WTH portion of this episode.
I actually thought there was a LOT of WTH portions in this episode.

Favorite Line: 

“I wasn’t helping you. I did it because I didn’t want her to become the mistress of some lecherous man.” Danny to LLS

"I wanted to ask you, you came here without taking a shower, didn't you?"  LLS trying to cover up his awkward attempt to steal a kiss.

What he's thinking. "Why is she so upset? Is she mad at me for offering her to Jongsing. Wow, where did these great tea leaves come from? Is there anyone left from the original cast of The Walking Dead? I must ask Jongsing."


There were so many points in this episode where I just shook my head and gave up making heads or tails of anybody's thought processes. Okay, I knew Uncle Flock was grieving, but other than that, it was a complete shrug-fest.  How can Lin Lans Ser, who is such a good businessman that he can be a mafia kingpin and high school principal at such a young age, be completely unaware of how hurtful his words are? Does he see the pain in  Mei Jin's eyes? Does he see how uncomfortable Jongsing is?

At this point I don't have to worry anymore that LLS is wanting to have sexy time with his 16 year old hostage.  I'm pretty sure that it will take years for these two to realize how to even kiss let alone actually have sex. My moral compass can go back to it's normal position with this confirmed.

I hope he apologizes to the appropriate parties for every boneheaded thing he has said in the last two episodes.