This episode was engrossing, absorbing, and characterized with Pinocchio’s usual poignancy. We focus on DP and In Ha, the latter in particular, which I’m actually rather happy about seeing how nuanced and complementary these two are. In the interest of the amount of memory WordPress says I have left, I’m going to tamp down firmly on my urge to fill this review with as many screencaps as physically possible and focus more on picking apart the episode…and fangirling because honestly? Choi In Ha is perfect.
Can we start with how perfect that apology was? I expected tears, recriminations (why did you lie to meeeee? À la Doctor Stranger), a notice of breakup, and instead I get this perfect. In Ha doesn’t need to apologize, she’s done nothing wrong and DP certainly hasn’t thought so either. But the very fact that she does, that she’s so utterly heartbroken at the realization of just how much he’s endured, just how much she’s dismissed as nothing, as him being irrational, over the 13 years of their acquaintance is just so…Choi In Ha. It’s that overwhelming empathy, understanding and love she has for him (which just gives me NDJ feels really) that bowls DP over. Gotta love how the apology went on for two hours though! Oh In Ha, you perfect creature, you don’t have to be sorry (as DP keeps saying!).
DP honestly seemed relieved at the reaction, that he’d finally be able to tell someone everything he’s been keeping hidden for the past 13 years. Well, excluding that bit about JM that is, though it’s enough that In Ha knows that something’s up, and he didn’t lie to her about it, rather he offered to tell her the complete truth (Thank you, show for not manufacturing a misunderstanding that way!).
DP, on the other hand, continues to cover things up. I can’t blame him but seriously DP? At this rate how are you any different from those you hate?
And woohoo at YGN Cap, the wise sage!
Those three conspirators did have families as well, likely, with children like you who want justice. Whether or not they deserve that justice is one thing, hiding the truth is another. That being said there’s no way that he’s going to continue to hide the truth, what with hyung on the warpath, but it is a slight let-down in terms of character for DP who’s been doing nothing but growing steadily so far. But you honestly can’t begrudge him the few moments of peace he wishes to savour. The girl he’s loved for so long loves him back, he’s found his brother, the injustice done to his father by the reporters has been outed, In Ha finally knows the truth about himself and things couldn’t be more perfect in his world at the moment. Is it so wrong for him to wish to enjoy that peace even a bit further? Poor thing.
In Ha, In Ha, In Ha, how I love you! What with NDJ and her and Lee Yeon Hee’s character in Miss Korea, I’m honestly ending this year on a drama high. I love this girl so much! Love how the first thing she wanted to know was the entirety of his story, love that she immediately thought of what her Pinocchio symdrome would mean for whatever secret he told her.
See, I love this. I seriously, seriously love characters that think ahead like her. Rather than immediately knowing the truth about hyung now, and then realizing that she’s carrying around a potential bomb that’ll explode in a later episode (thereby betraying DP’s truth, and blah blah drama angst blah), we have this awesome display of levelheadedness. In Ha! ❤ Love how we instantly begin the subsequent mom-shade. From refusing to get on the lift to confronting her in the workplace, gosh, could In Ha get anymore perfect? It’s not like this is all about DP either. In Ha is disgusted with herself as well, for having worshipped such a mother for so long, despite the clear evidence of her coldness, and disagrees vehemently with her actions, regardless of whether it was DP’s family or another’s family. The fact that it was DP, though, makes the all the more heartbreaking as she knows now, just how much he had to endure to love her the way he does.
Cha Ok is definitely being affected by her coldness. It’s a bit sad as she’s begun to fall right under In Ha’s spell, only for In Ha to find out how awful she was. And this isn’t exactly something that an apology can smooth over. In Ha isn’t going to buy that she’s changed in the intervening years (even if she has) that easily, especially after that particularly vile display with DP. Honestly, every time I think I’m beginning to like CO, she always reverts to IceQueen mode, and does something super nasty. What use is Cha Ok warming up to In Ha, if she continues to treat everyone else like dirt?
Gosh, the sheer amount of willpower it must have taken for DP to hold back was incredible. You could see it in his eyes, that he was holding back for In Ha and no other. (How does he do it?)
And gosh that final stand at the lecture hall. Words fail to do just to that scene. Well done, show. Well done. Seeing everything that has happened so far come full circle in such a satisfying, powerful and poignant moment was…I honestly have no words. I had no idea we were leading into such a moment with Yoo Rae essentially made a fool of herself (albeit an adorable one)by asking that ridiculous question. But Cha Ok made her own bed the moment she chose to take that nasty swipe at DP once again (damn it, Ice Mom!) She assumed that DP would take it silently as always, and she sure was right there. But she failed to factor In Ha into the equation, that In Ha had seen the nasty barbs Cha Ok had shot at DP previously, that In Ha had seen the enormous strength it had taken DP to hold back, and that In Ha loved DP.
And the moment she stood up and began to speak was glorious. Honestly, I felt as though I was back in Liar Game for a second, watching NDJ grab that mic and yell at the others to fight with them. Just wow.
Talk about moving. Even her Pinocchio syndrome came into play magnificently. There’s no one within that lecture hall who will doubt the verity of her words. From the moment those hiccups began, no , from the moment Cha Ok chose to lie, she sealed her fate.
And the best part wasn’t the increasing shock, anger and humiliation in Cha Ok’s eyes, or the looks on Yoo Rae and the YGN reporters’ faces, but the silent understanding that passed between DP and In Ha.
Only they understood just those words, and why they needed to be said. The spine-tingling, goosebump inducing overlay of DP’s former lashing out at In Ha, to her lashing out at her mother felt like a culmination of everything this show was and is, honesty, and love staying strong despite all circumstances. I was with Yoo Rae on the cheer, though if you ask me In Ha should have gotten a standing ovation.
I don’t think In Ha will continue the mom-shade and I’m actually glad. After a moment as shattering as that, both are going to need some space to recover and hopefully begin to rebuild their relationship. Continuing the shade, at this point would seem a little cruel on In Ha’s part, and quite contrary to her character, so I hope we don’t go there. She’s said what needs to be said as YGN Cap so wisely noted. Now let’s begin rebuilding bridges. Hopefully Cha Ok will wisen up after that huge slice of humble pie she just got served.
Yoo Rae continues to delight what with the question she asked and the general hilarity that comes into play around DP. I have a feeling this isn’t going to last much longer (the joke is only funny for so long) but it’s enjoyable to see the different ways it finds to milks the misunderstanding.
There’s an interesting parallel between JM and Ice Mom here. In Ha can’t help but despise her mother for what she did to DP’s family but at the same time, can’t help but love the mother she remembers from all those years ago, the mother that’s only just begun to soften towards her now.
DP hates and fears his brother for the murders that he all but admitted to carrying out but can’t help but worry and care for him being caught and tries to preserve his happiness somehow, which is why he understands how In Ha is feeling so well. Blood is thicker than water, I suppose. The bonds of family go deep, yet this holds only until a certain extent. If anything, this show’s proving the opposite as DP and In Ha place their own combined family above their original separate ones. Their priority is each other and those who’ve loved and cared for them for so long. Hence why In Ha takes DP’s side no matter what, and DP takes In Ha’s side just as fervently. Even more so now that hyung has made an attempt to harm her (though it certainly wasn’t a serious attack, it was definitely an act of terror). Judging by the preview, he’s going to stop hiding the truth and reveal JM’s ugly side to the world. And in doing so, will have to reveal the truth about himself as well.
This is going to get him in a HELL of a lot of trouble with Daddy/Brother for sure, who was surprisingly cool with their dating revelation, but is likely going to be super pissed once who DP really is comes out. I’m not sure about Grandpa, who remains as delightful as always (DP’s poor piggybanks!) and hope for DP’s sake that this family will remain as close as it always was.
Yet things seem perpetually wired to go wrong in K-Dramaland for some reason. Even the reassurance that surely we’ll get our pot of gold, our happily ever after, isn’t as certain as it used to be. It’s not that I want a happy ending, I want a rational one that follows logically from the storyline. And when you have your formerly brilliant written, nuanced and intelligent characters suddenly going apeshit and monkeyballing around, then my brain just fizzes out (for goodness sake, Doctor Stranger). I have far too many theories on how things are going to go and I just hope that none of them come true.
Firstly, *sigh* IHYV broke my heart and soul and glued them back together à la Dr Hoon (invisible scars) because of that time jump and just what may/may not have happened during that time jump (though it didn’t happen because Park Soo Ha is perfect) and of course we had to have some bloody amnesia thrown in there. I gave up on Joseon Gunman after that time jump, and just how much angst I saw waiting ahead of me. Point is, time jumps usually indicate angst a plenty, and plenty of false leads and tears. And we’re being set up for one here. The date on Cha Ok’s lecture is 2013.12.18.
We’re exactly a year behind. Which means, something’s going to happen. It won’t be good, and we’ll have to skip ahead to see its repercussions. The question is, what is it? I’ve been playing with the idea of DP being sent to prison/on the run after being framed for hyung’s murders, but that doesn’t seem to be it judging by the episode preview, he appears to be putting all his cards on the table.
So what is it then? In Ha clutches her chest, weeping, and ekes out a faint “Dalpo-yah!” between sobs in the preview.
Something’s going to happen in episode 11. Is DP going to be kicked out of the familial home? I’d love to see DP-In Ha interactions around the family now that the two are officially a couple, but I somehow feel like that won’t be happening for some reason. Then there’s DP’s new hairstyle (his fourth in a row!) at the end and the fact that he’s going by his real name WHEN HE SAID that he wouldn’t be abandoning the name Choi Dal Po.
I’ll bet HWJ’s hand in marriage that we’ve reached DP in the present at that point, and thus the second arc of this story. IHYV had a similar format as far as I remember (I tend not to rewatch the really good shows too quickly, give it a year, maybe two, and then you’ll forget the magic enough for it to move you again). Halfway through, we were suddenly thrown the time jump and amnesia curveball. I knew there had to be a catch, when the show was this good from the start. As one of my favourite book characters ever (the unbelievably charismatic Kelsier from Mistborn: The Final Empire) says, “There’s always another secret”.
Hyung remains as central to the story as ever, even when he’s merely creeping on In Ha. Seeing him go after In Ha so soon sure was a twist, as I honestly expected him to take full advantage of the window of opportunity the lecture gave him, to even the score with Cha Ok. That he would harm the person who stood up against Cha Ok, even for the sake of information is mind-boggling. Couldn’t he just have asked her how she knew like a rational person? I think it’s a given that Bum Joo and Joo Ho now actively suspect JM of nefariousness given how he gave them the slip. Should be interesting to see them having to take down the very hero they created. Joo Ho’s words especially were deeply resonant throughout this episode.
That was honestly the best bit of advice I’d heard in a while.
Now I need to wait another week until episode 11.
All I want is more of this, show. Can we just not take the angsty road? Pretty please with a DalPo hug on top? *swoons*
But that happiness…what? Can it just not come crashing down? How about we just continue to venture into old married couple territory instead?
Can i please see HWJ and NDJ do this someday? *collapsesontothefloorinapuddleofjellyimaginingit*