Father and son meet…reunion time?
Episode 2 recap
The show retraces the last few minutes of Episode 1: the kids are caught, and Tak Gu confesses. Il Jong (the president) tells his subordinates to call the police, and walks away.
Tak Gu hesitates a little, and then runs after Il Jong. He collapses on the ground kneeling, asking for forgiveness. It doesn’t work with the Il Jong who demands to know why he should forgive them. Tak Gu is stumped for a while, but puts on his best smile and tries to come up with excuses. The president doesn’t buy any of them, and calls Tak Gu’s bluff. “You’re brave enough to steal, but not to take responsibility.”
In the meantime, Mi Sun is handing over needlework to a woman (tearoom owner) to earn some money for rent. The woman offered her half the usual price, which is insufficient. The woman’s daughter walks in, and she is the girl from episode 1 that Tak Gu was looking embarassed at (I didn’t mention her since it was not clear whether she would be important). Mi Sun notices that the girl is hurt, but is distracted when the girl’s mom offered more money. Mi Sun takes the money and leaves.
When she reaches home, Mi Sun sees fat boy’s mom huffing out of the door. Something big has happened! The two ladies hurry off to the police station.
After the initial relief at seeing their sons, Fat Boy’s mom demands to know what they were doing, stealing from her husband’s workplace. You probably saw this coming — Fat Boy blames Tak Gu for making him steal. Mi Sun has to intervene, and turns towards Tak Gu. “How could you?” It looks more like a show for Fat Boy’s mom if it’s anything like the previous incidents. Tak Gu does not deny. He says he just wanted to eat bread.
Mi Sun tries to bring the situation to a close by offering to pay for the bread that both boys stole. The policeman says it’s not a matter of money because the president handed the boys over. Mi Sun is shocked at the mention of the president. She decides to go see the president.
At the factory, Mi Sun sees Il Jong and his entourage. Suddenly, her sense of purpose disappears, and she looks longingly at him while hiding. She manages to remember her purpose for coming and prepares to approach them when she catches sight of Manager Han. She stops and hides as the men get into the car and drive off. Il Jong does not notice her, but Manager Han seemed to have noticed the suspicious character.
Much later in the day with no news from the president, the police decide to let the boys go. Mi Sun takes Tak Gu to the village bakery, and buys him not one, but a whole plate of bread. Tak Gu looks wide-eyed at the bread. Looking sad, Mi Sun apologizes for not being able to buy Tak Gu what he wants, and tells him how precious he is to her. Tak Gu tears up, and eats his bread while his mother watches. There was something incredibly touching about the scene, and I had to hold back tears. It’s a melodrama alright.
At the same time, Ma Jun is getting the punishment that Grandma promised him earlier in the day. Punishment is different in the rich house. Grandma lays a cane down, and starts by preaching, telling Ma Jun a story of how Il Jong at his age was waking up early to carry water. He cut trees for wood after school, and studied at night, and he was always top of his class.
Ma Jun interrupts Grandma, saying that he’s heard this story a million times. “But you didn’t learn.” Grandma continues that Ma Jun cannot get anything truly unless he works for it. Prelude now over, Grandma asks how many times Ma Jun wants to get hit.
To her despair, Ma Jun says “as many times as you want.” He continues, “Honestly I don’t want to get hit, but you’re not going to do that, so do what you want.” In that case, Grandma will hit him until he is sorry. Surprisingly Ma Jun is not immediately sorry, and endures the caning on the back of his legs.
Outside, In Sook is in a frenzy hearing the sound of the cane. Manager Han holds her back, and offers to go inside instead.
Inside the room, Ma Jun is bleeding and trying to hold his tears back. Grandma is out of breath from hitting him. Manager Han suggests that Grandma end the punishment to let her body rest. Grandma doesn’t look like she agrees and Ma Jun chooses this moment to break into loud sobbing cries, which naturally draws his mother into the room.
In Sook commands Ma Jun to go to his room. Her son safely out of the room, In Sook demands to know why Grandma is mean to the grandson she has been wanting. Grandma says that it is not enough to give birth to a son; it is also necessary to teach him well. Annoyed In Sook accuses Grandma of leftover remorse from Mi Sun. Grandma looks confused.
Not reading the situation, In Sook keeps going on about how Grandma would prefer Mi Sun’s son instead. Now Grandma gets really upset and shouts for In Sook to get out. Manager Han looks disapprovingly at the situation but is helpless as In Sook keeps going crazy.
In Ma Jun’s room, Manager Han applies some cream on his son’s legs. Ma Jun asks why Grandma hates only him. Manager Han tells him to ignore it. His Grandma won’t be able to touch him when he becomes an adult, so he should focus on the big things. In fact, Ma Jun will become bigger than his dad (Il Jong), and Manager Han promises to make it happen.
Ma Jun asks, “How can a secretary do that?” Manager Han replies that he is someone who would die for Ma Jun. Surprised, Ma Jun suddenly stops crying and looks back at Manager Han with wide eyes, like he might have understood something. Manager Han is getting to be really sinister.
That same night, Tak Gu is having problems sleeping. He is recalling what the president said about taking responsibility.
The next morning, Fat Boy and Tak Gu leave for school. With the kids barely out of the gate, the landlady immediately asks Mi Sun to move out. Mi Sun realizes that she forgot about the rent, but the landlady says that it is more than that. Mi Sun apologizes, but to no avail, so she diverts attention to the landlady’s laundry and offers to take them to the creek to wash. The landlady refuses, but Mi Sun grabs the laundry and says it is not inconvenient. The landlady lets Mi Sun go, and chokes in a smile. We see where Tak Gu got that from.
Unfortunately, Tak Gu and Fat Boy were outside and they heard everything. Tak Gu is, of course, unhappy. They walk by the recycling man on the way to school, and Tak Gu gets an idea. He asks whether he can get paid for the recyclables, and the man says yes. Thus, Tak Gu proceeds to spend his free time picking stuff from around. He works so hard that he starts to fall asleep in class.
His friends and Fat Boy offer to help Tak Gu, and he accepts. Finally he collects enough money to redeem his and Mi Sun’s dignity, and the boys celebrate.
We interrupt the celebration with a third appearance of Yu Kyung, whom we now confirm as Tak Gu’s crush. Her parents are wine sellers, and thus she is not socially accepted. Not that it matters to Tak Gu.
Money in hand, Tak Gu marches into the bread factory, and approaches Il Jong who was making his rounds. The entourage tries to shoo him off, but Tak Gu stands firm and declares that he has business with the president. Il Jong looks impressed by the show of bravado, and demands to know what business Tak Gu has.
Tak Gu explains that he could not sleep because of his embarrassment. Thus he sold recyclables to get the bread money, and hands the money ceremoniously over. Il Jong does not react for a while. Suddenly, he bursts out in laughter, and tells Tak Gu that he is funny. Tak Gu looks confused, and explain that he is not trying to be funny.
Trying to make things more serious and formal, Tak Gu identifies his name, school and class. “Tak Gu?” Il Jong notices the name. As Tak Gu explains his name, Il Jong remembers Mi Sun. He accepts the bread money.
Mission accomplished, Tak Gu proudly marches through the entourage to the back, where his friends were witnessing the exchange. While the boys high-five each other in delight, Manager Han and Ma Jun look displeased. The president asks for a box of cream bread to be sent to Tak Gu’s school, and after a pause, to Tak Gu’s dad as well. (wait…did something just happen?)
The bread goes to the school, and everyone is happy. The teacher announces that the bread was due to Tak Gu’s courageous act. The girl crush looks impressed, and Tak Gu looks super pleased.
Manager Han checks in with Ma Jun to find out why he is looking upset. Ma Jun explains that it’s because Il Jong sent Tak Gu a box of bread. Moreover, the look on Il Jong’s face is one that Ma Jun has never seen since birth.
Back in Tak Gu’s home, Mi Sun is upset that Tak Gu went to see the president. Tak Gu explains that he had to, and his mom is quiet. She ventures to ask what Il Jong said, and Tak Gu proudly replied that the president called him a courageous kid.
Tak Gu retrieves the two cream bread he saved from earlier, wanting to share his reward with Mi Sun. She has other issues in mind, and asks him for more details about the encounter, trying to hold back her excitement and tears.
Tak Gu replies that the president is like a tiger on the outside, but is really nice in reality. Trying to hide her emotions, Mi Sun turns her back and tells Tak Gu to eat without her. She tells him that he shouldn’t go back to the bread factory because the president is busy.
Tak Gu doesn’t pick up on her tone. He says that he wants to be like the president when he grows up. Turning her back to hide her face is now insufficient. Mi Sun talks about the forgotten laundry outside, and exits the room. Outside, she tries hard to compose herself and collects the laundry.
Unfortunately, Manager Han is hiding in the shadows, and he recognizes her, somewhat shocked. He goes back to report to the president, and lies that it was not Mi Sun. Il Jong looks disappointed.
Tak Gu runs into his crush by the river. Her sleeves are rolled up and she is cleaning up a nose bleed. Going closer, Tak Gu notices the bruises on her arms. He demands to know who did it to her. Not replying, Yu Kyung walks away, leaving her bag behind. Tak Gu picks up her bag and runs after her. However, he refuses to return it unless she tells him who hurt her.
She demands to know what Tak Gu would do if he knew who. He said he would hit the person. She says she wants him to kill the person — can he do it? Tak Gu looks shocked, and she jerks her bag out of his grasp. “Stupid.”
Tak Gu apologizes, but he doesn’t know how to kill a person. He offers to make her laugh instead. He does the little chant that he and his friends like, and she is unresponsive. Tak Gu apologizes for failing, and leaves. But as he leaves, he farts, and she giggles. He turns back and notes that she laughed. He repeats his leg-lifting, fart-inducing move and keeps her giggling as he continues to walk away.
Yu Kyung’s father comes along and catches her talking to Tak Gu. He accuses her of trying to seduce boys and hits her. Her cries reach Tak Gu, who turns around and sees the scene. He runs over and asks her dad to stop hitting her. Her dad switches his target to Tak Gu, and they have a little chase scene that ends up circling around a construction scaffold. Being drunk and clumsy, the dad knocks over the scaffold and a ton of heavy things fall on him. He lies motionless as the kids look on in horror. Yu Kyung may have gotten what she wished for.
Tak Gu runs over to see if the man is fine, and wants to call for an ambulance. Yu Kyung thinks that they should run away and that he’s dead. Tak Gu tries to wake the drunk dad by calling him a few more times. Just when he was about to give up, drunk dad grabs Tak Gu. The kids run away in fear.
While all the excitement is happening, Mi Sun receives an unwelcomed visitor — Manager Han. They go to a quiet place to talk. He accuses her of plotting — living near the Geo Seung factory, and with the manager of the factory? Manager Han threatens her and a fearful Mi Sun promises to disappear. Worried about her son’s safety, Mi Sun frantically runs around looking for Tak Gu who hasn’t gone home yet.
Nightfall, and the kids are still hanging out. Tak Gu unsuccessfully tries to hide his hunger, and they realize that they can’t hang out forever. Yu Kyung says they should head home. Tak Gu offers to have her stay with him and his mom but Yu Kyung declines. Her dad will be passed out from drinking, so she’ll be fine. Tak Gu promises not to tell others about her dad.
Tak Gu runs into his mom in the marketplace, and she frantically looks him over to make sure that he’s not hurt.
Yu Kyung lingers outside the police station, where her dad finds her and drags her home. He demands to know who the boy was, but Yu Kyung says that she doesn’t know him.
Back home, Mi Sun starts packing. A confused Tak Gu asks what is going on. Mi Sun says that she will tell him when he gets older. Apparently, Tak Gu has heard this before and he is now sick of it. He tells his mom that he’s sick of having to move just when he’s made some friends. He wants to stay. This may be the first time Tak Gu has expressed his feelings about the constant moving. Mi Sun cries miserably to herself in the room, while Tak Gu hangs outside the house tries to cheer up, chanting his usual chant.
Yu Kyung is at home, and is miserable too. She chants Tak Gu’s chant, trying to cheer herself up.
“Off the Incheon shores,
You may find soda.
But if you have no cup,
You can’t drink it at all.”
Back in the rich house, they are having dinner. Grandma excuses herself because she is not feeling well. The family discusses excitedly about Il Jong’s birthday party which is happening the next day. Il Jong excuses himself, and tells his wife to care more for his mother than the party.
That night, Mi Sun can’t sleep, and thinks about what Tak Gu said. The next morning, she dresses herself, and wakes Tak Gu up. They have a place to visit.
The place is the rich house, where the garden party is underway. Tak Gu is overwhelmed and asks who lives there. “Your dad.”
They are stopped at the security post. They don’t have an invitation, but her name is Kim Mi Sun. If the guards tell that to the president, he will understand. The guards convey the message, but to Manager Han. He is the one who goes to the gate, and asks her to leave. Unlike the previous day, Mi Sun stands her ground, “Is this not allowed?”
Manager Han orders the guards to drag her out, and they comply. They ignore Tak Gu who is standing by the side. Sizing up the situation, he runs towards the house and shouts for help. People at the party turn their heads…and it’s a cliffhanger.
I guess I am still wondering where all this is going. 2 episodes on the childhood part, and more to come. But we know it all eventually gets to the part when the kids grow up. Sure, we are seeing character development as the kids grow up, and it’s interesting. But where are we heading with this information?
Grandma seemed somewhat unfriendly the first episode, and she is not friendly towards In Sook and Ma Jun, but I think she judges people on their own merits. She’s been through hard times, which makes her different from the type of mother-in-law who was rich from the start. That was an interesting revelation, that Il Jong had to build his own empire.
We also learn a little more about Mi Sun and Tak Gu’s lives so far. I did not realize that they have been moving around constantly, in fear of being found, which really makes me wonder what Mi Sun was thinking, choosing a town that had a Geo Seung factory. South Korea is kinda big, and there is no reason for her to choose a place within driving distance to Geo Seung.
I was also wondering why Tak Gu has Mi Sun’s accent, unlike his friends. One possibility is that his only constant companion is Mi Sun. They could also have been staying somewhere south.
In any case, the gloves are off. Mi Sun has chosen to face the problems head on (which maybe she should have years ago) instead of running away. I doubt things will go well (given the trailers at the end), and maybe it will add to the story. We were coasting along before, but now we have slightly upped the stakes.
Episode Rating: 16.9% (DramaWiki)
Read Episode 3 recaps