Monday, April 18, 2016

[DAEBAK REVIEW] The ahjumma and the new eel series: review, thoughts and impression of Daebak drama episode 4

In chat mode…
by Esther Noloc and Beth Wagner
Guest: Mamacri Chan

The fourth episode is here, girls! After watching the preview of this episode, I think we will be both laughing and crying, so maybe now is a good time to prepare with a box of tissues just in case. Let's laugh and cry together in this chat, talking about every detail!

Esther: Hi Beth, we have Mamacri from Europe here in this chat again. Even though we are from different countries and cultures, we agree on a lot of things—united minds as JKS eels.

Mamacri: Hi again girls...this episode left us breathless...wanting more, much more! We want to keep watching what our dear Gae Ddong is going to do next. I am so enjoying this story and his fabulous acting. It has really been amazing to see the quality of this drama!

Beth: Hi there sisters! I agree Mamacri. As happy as I was to finally see him in a drama, and watch as it aired live, I am even more happy that he chose so well! He really picked one with a perfect story, director, and cast to work with. Eels all agree or Prince has incredible acting talent of course, but I think Daebak is really giving him the chance to showcase it to the world. 

Esther: Well, here it goes, and oh my gosh! Our boy is soo expressive, so intense! When Gae Ddong spotted Dam Seo on the horse, almost in slow motion like in a movie romantic scene, did you see how his jaw hung open and his eyes opened wide? He even fell over his own feet and landed on his backside. It was so charming how he closed his eyes and shook himself like he couldn’t believe she was real.

Mamacri: Ohh...that scene was so beautifully done, and his! You could really feel how he was in awe of this pretty girl. The way she rode her horse with her black veil moving slowly in the was the most beautiful thing he ever saw. He literally was turned topsy turvy at the sight of her.

Beth: Yep, just a single look, and our boy is head over heels in love! I hope he ends up as lucky in love as he has been in staying alive so far!

Esther: Hmmm, some man at the door of the gambling house tried to block Dam Seo’s path, but Gae Ddong rushed to her rescue and almost broke that rude man’s finger! Lol, our hurricane boy. Another big guard came out, and pushed Gae Dong down.  Poor Gae Dong really wants to be strong in front of the girl of his dreams…but that big man is like a stone wall, no matter how Gae Ddong punches and pushes!  Ouch!! That big man even shoved our boy in the nose and made him fall down again

Mamacri: Gae Ddong our youthful hero...he saw injustice and came to the rescue. It was rash and he didn’t have any training to take on a strong man like that, but he couldn’t help himself.  Just like his father, “fools rush in”. 

Esther: Oh hahaha, he tried to do one of those martial arts jumps from off the floor…sorry son, but I started laughing like crazy when you flopped around like a fish, instead of looking like Bruce Lee. Lolllll……you were my clown in that scene, but when I saw blood in your nose my heart stopped!

Beth: Yes, I was laughing at our poor Gae Ddong, but then…. Oh his nose started to bleed, and the way he looked so embarrassed in front of Dam Seo, I’m almost crying now! It’s OK….Fighting, Gae Ddong!!

Esther: Look how Dam Seo walked into the gambling house and Hong Mae recognized her right away. She is either an important person there, or a regular. Gae Ddong just followed her in too, haha. He wants a chance to talk to her!

Mamacri: Just like his father 20 year before when he entered this same gambling house, wide-eyed at all the games and money flashing around. His father lost his mother in a bet there, I hope Gae Ddong doesn’t lose there too.

Beth: He doesn’t even realize how he actually owes his life to this place. If his mother hadn’t been gambled away to the King, Gae Ddong wouldn’t exist.

Esther: Dam Seo sat down with In Jwa at table prepared with food only for two, but haha! Gae Ddong just plopped down and started eating their food and drinking their wine! ! He even asked Dam Seo why her hands are so rough looking. He’s so rude and unrefined, but kind of cute at the same time in a little innocent boy way, lol.  Poor him, without a mother to teach him manners, we have to forgive him. Ahh, he thinks In Jwa is just her cards teacher, and asked her why she was learning to play when she should be getting married. Hahaha, he even tells her to study with him, because his card skills must be better than In Jwa’s!

Mamacri: LOL...nothing can stop this passionate young horse from chasing his love...he even follows her into the lion’s den. With no clue about proper etiquette he just sat himself down at their table and starts shoving the food in his mouth, while "hitting" on Dam Seo, Hahaha!  Waaa, his innocence and bravery really show. In Jwa was shocked but amused, while poor Dam Seo was having a nervous breakdown because she didn't know what to do about this dumb kid hitting on her lol!

Beth: Omg, hahaha, the way he just told her that she would be his wife, and how mad she got! LOL. But our boy wasn’t the least bit deterred, just kept looking at her with that lopsided, “you know you will love me in the end” smile…. Ahhhh breaking the hearts of eels, that little smile…..!!
Beth: Gae Ddong can’t get a break here…. In Jwa takes Dam Seo away (to show her the vaults of money in the basement, and put her in charge of this important aspect of his operation—money fuels their cause)….. 

Beth: ...Meanwhile Hong Mae comes and shoves her hot pipe into his chest and demands that he pay for the food he and his “wife” ate.  Oh, haha…. Our Gae Ddong is so not wise to the ways of the city!  He thought his one nyang coin would be enough to pay for it all, and ends up getting threatened by Hong Mae’s thugs!

Esther: In Jwa and Dam Seo came back, and now they are betting! That man took the one nyang coin, and flipped it. He told Gae Ddong to pick which side is up. Our boy looked so sure of himself, so confident—he said front side up! He even said he will bet himself and be In Jwa’s servant if he’s wrong!

Beth: Oh…. I am biting my nails! Don’t want him to fall victim to In Jwa already…… WHEW!!  Our boy really does have good luck—he picked right.  Ahh, relieved.

Esther: Oohhhh…. In Jwa asked for his name and our boy was so ashamed to say it, especially in front of the girl of his dreams, he just mumbled it. Then Hong Mae laughed and make fun of him. But Dam Seo didn’t laugh, she just looked a little sad for this pitiful country boy. Ahh, I think his thoughts were, "Eat me Earth" I cried for him.

Mamacri: Gae Ddong was never confronted with having to think about his peculiar and not so appropriate name before. He just now realized…hardly a name to impress the love of your life isn't it...poor thing.

Beth: Oh I just cringed for him, our poor dear boy! Ok, I’m cracking open the box of tissues already…. All weepy at his embarrassment. But at least he got his coin back. In Jwa tossed it back to him.

Esther: The prince Yeoning is meanwhile getting drunk in a nearby bar (bet he doesn’t have troubles impressing the ladies). He walks out, stumbling, and walked right past Gae Ddong! They have a close encounter at the third kind, bumping shoulders, lol.

Mamacri: Very well filmed, the crossing of the paths of both brothers...even though they have the same blood running through their veins...their personality and lives could not be more different. Here we can see that Gae Ddong is a very simple and naïve-- a “seize the day”, non-calculating young man-- while the other has been groomed in a very hostile environment and doesn’t trust anyone.

Beth: Yes, just their body language alone, with Gae Ddong sort of skipping and tossing his coin up in the air and catching it, like a little boy…. While the Prince stumbles drunkenly, a too-worldly adult already.  Funny how despite their differences, they are both immediately captured by the same con-man’s game!

Esther: Prince Yeoning might be drunk, but he is an astute player. He figured out the trick, and kept Gae Ddong from losing his coin too. He returned the coin to Gae Ddong at the end.

Beth: I kept thinking…. Shouldn’t he give Gae Ddong 2 coins? Since he won a coin from it?  Oh well, the spoils of gambling went to him, because he figured out the trick I guess. At least Gae Ddong got his coin back.

Mamacri: Gae Ddong grew up in small towns, where people were less conniving. The prince has learned to distrust others, be more calculating and analyze situations...he sees and knows what others are thinking, even though he is drunk! It was kind of him to take "pity" on poor GaeDdong and to spare him from losing his one nyang. I loved that scene… was fun to see the two brothers together.

Beth: Yes, they really do have immediate chemistry! I think they must truly have made a friendship on the set too. I like seeing that while the Prince might be jaded, he does seem to have a kind heart.  He realizes that one nyang means a lot to someone with very little. I wonder if his mother (their mother) taught him that.

Esther: oh haha! Gae Ddong was trying to sleep between his father and grandpa, but Dam Seo still is stuck in his head like a thorn! He kept seeing her face everywhere, so he tried to go outside and get some fresh air, but even outside, he looks up and the Moon has her face smiling down at him! Ehemm, exercise was his solution?? Do you think that works?

Beth: haha, if that worked, eels would be very fit indeed…. We can’t stop seeing his face everywhere too LOL!

Mamacri: Ooh, that In Jwa! He really has everyone on his chessboard, and he will play them one by one to get what he wants! He even suspects that the Prince is faking his playboy behavior.  Aww and then back to Gae Ddong, having his sweet dreams of this girl and feeling so happy… whahahaha...when he went out to have a cold fresh breath of air to cool down, omg, his exercising moves are very suspicious looking LOL!!  So cute though, when he turns up to the sky and sees her face in the struck him right in the heart and he gets even more flushed.

Beth: Yup, he is just totally a goner, 100% in love with pretty Dam Seo!

Esther: He even stalked her again the next day lol! Followed her from the city street out to the archery range, where she was teaching ladies to shoot. So sweet how he is hiding behind the tree, peeking at her, so nervous and excited with that flower in his hand, practicing how to propose to her!

Mamacri: Really like a love sick puppy!  Following her every move... he even picked her a flower that cute country bumpkin lol...very romantic indeed.  By the way, that flower is a Dianthus Chinesis "Deep Violet" , it is a kind of carnation with the meaning of “flower of love” and “flower of the gods”.

Beth: Thanks Mamacri, that is so interesting!  I bet they chose it for that love meaning, for sure!  He really is so darling here…. Hope our JKS feels this giddy about a girl someday too!

Esther: Aishhh after all his practicing and hiding, she saw him anyway, and shot an arrow right next to him into the tree where he was hiding! Then when he tried to sweetly ask her name and offered her the flower, she just spun around and cut the flower in half. She even brought the blade to his neck and said next time she will cut that! Oh noo! Who is the rude one now? You girl!

Mamacri: That Dam Seo really has a problem don't you think? It seems like In Jwa’s indoctrination of hate and revenge with her just left her cold, and devoid of human feelings! Confronted with such free-flowing feelings of love from our Gae Ddong, the only response she knows how to make is to try to make it stop with an arrow and a sword! But I’m glad to see some signs that our Gae Ddong has an inborn talent to quickly analyze things, too, like how he knew from the callouses on her hands that she must be an archer. He will need this power of observation in the not so far future, I’m sure.  

Beth: Poor Gae Ddong, his love confession thwarted, and poor Dam Seo, unable to respond in a normal way because of the way she was raised. I think they will find a path to each other though—I think they need each other! He needs some of her training and seriousness, she needs some of his lightness and true love for her.

Esther: Hahaha, he is so crazy, finding her even more pretty when she is mad! Love is blind for sure. He keeps following her too! Lol, now he pretended to be a palanquin carrier, just to follow her inside one of the geisha houses, where there is a big party going on!

Mamacri: Yep, he is a love-struck puppy! Even though he said he is not like a dog following her, he is exactly that, whahahahaha! This boy has balls for a country bumpkin. He lacks any sense of danger, which is a bit stupid and very naïve, but so endearing too. So funny…. that virgin boy is not use to a woman touching him, and those gisaengs are all over him, thinking he has a paycheck from the palanquin in his pocket hahahaha. But once Dam Seo came out and started dancing, he brushed back those two girls, totally mesmerized by Dam Seo and her beautiful dance.  The Prince too, he is struck by her as well. Guess they both never saw such elegant beauty before.

Beth: Hey…..Yaaa! Prince!  You are the second lead…. Eyes off our boy’s lady! Kkkkk (he is going to at least get the girl, right??)

Esther: Yes, Dam Seo’s dance really made Gae Ddong’s and prince Yeoning’s hearts race! They are both enchanted by her charms. Oh, the way she stared at the prince while dancing, thinking, "he is the king son,my enemy!”  I don’t care so much if In Jwa uses her to hurt the Prince, but I am so worried he will also use her to hurt our sweet Gae Dgong! Oh our poor Eels’ hearts!

Mamacri: Poor Gae Ddong, he descended into the lion's den oblivious of evils and conspiracies…he had to witness his lady love trying to seduce another man. His innocence really shows, for he sees no difference/disadvantage with his rival, even though he is poor and his rival is obviously rich. His heart is that genuine. Well what Dam Seo was set out to do she achieved-- the prince was totally mesmerized by her.... 

Beth: Ahhh, you know, I’m really starting to love this sweet brash boy…. I think I will be a little sad when he turns into that cold-as-ice gambler we saw in the first episode.

Esther: Haha, look how he is jealous already! In the blink of an eye, Gae Ddong jumped over to the prince’s table and grabbed him by the collar! He told this powerful wealthy guy not to look at her like that anymore, because "She is going to be my wife!”  Waaa, he is very confident…let’s see if he can pull it off....

Mamacri: Hahahaha, male hormones at work here!! Gae Ddong is totally driven by instincts, trying to protect what he has his heart set on. If he had used his head instead of his heart, he would know the other was a far more powerful opponent, with the environment favoring him too. Lol, Gae Ddong and his little brother's path cross again, and they start fighting like schoolboys over a girl!

Esther: Oh no…another bet! Both Gae Ddong and the prince will throw a single die and the one with the lowest number will win.  Ohhh, the winner will have Dam Seo’s company for the evening, but from the look on her face, I think they forgot to ask her first, kkkkk. Well, I guess maybe asking a lady’s permission wasn’t the tradition in that era.

Mamacri: Poor Gae Ddong!! Another scene where we can see him being an "honest" yet simple person. He lacks the conniving ways of the upper class, like the prince and In Jwa. So many of the characters around him make it their business to gain power over people—something that would never occur to Gae Ddong

Beth: I can’t believe they all agreed that the Prince’s cheater move counted as a win, I mean, how is that not cheating?? Wait-- does that mean our boy has to strip??

Esther: It does indeed….Eels, prepare your eyes…Gae Ddong has lost and now he has to strip down!! Well, he might not be that happy to be in his underwear, but Eels will enjoy every moment of it, kkk.

Mamacri: Yep, he lost...but eels won big! We get to see our AP STRIPPING!!!!!!!!!!!!!!       Oh, but our poor Gae Ddong, he must have felt so ashamed having to do that...first he has not the best attire among all those rich people, and then being stripped naked in front of your love interest is another hit to the ego...they all laughed at him too, so humiliating.

Beth: AP stripping……….. !!!!   Awwww…. Well, as much as I am enjoying seeing this much of his pretty skin, I have a problem…. JKS is doing such a great job portraying Gae Ddong, that I really feel terrible for him! Embarrassed yet again in front of his crush…. Poor poor boy (but keep that coat off for just a second longer, will you?) 

Esther: Ooh, that In Jwa is such a schemer! He just revealed the Prince’s identity in front of all the people there. He didn’t come alone either…he brought the chief investigator with him because that kind of gambling is illegal! I don’t know what his game is yet thought, because the investigator won’t arrest someone as important as the Prince. He will just arrest Dam Seo and Gae Ddong! And Gae Ddong is such a gentleman, he refuses to let them take Dam Seo. He insists on taking her punishment with his own, even though he could be crippled from it. Nooo, it’s not fair!

Mamacri: Wouldn’t you know it, of course In Jwa steps in! He set himself up a golden opportunity to put the prince in a confrontational and potentially damaging situation.  We will see how he means to use this. He’s always making people into pawns to fit his evil plans. Aigoo!! Our Gae Ddong is such gentleman to protect the lady and take her punishment as well....that stupid boy aiisshhhhh……

Beth: He might have been embarrassed by having to strip down, but he shows her his true character by taking her punishment without a second thought to his own safety. Oh, I’m so touched by this sincere boy, and worried sick for him too!  This drama is so hard on Eel’s hearts already…. Ottoke……..

Esther: Dam Seo is upset by the whole thing too. She asked In Jwa why he didn’t tell her about this part of the plan.  She feels so guilty now. Maybe Gae Ddong annoyed her before, but she doesn’t want an innocent man to be punished because of her. She almost cried too. Hmmmm, that is a good sign for Gae Ddong I think.

Mamacri: Yup... Dam Seo seems to be a bit more naïve than she appeared. She’s not a manipulator like In Jwa, she’s in it for the pure revenge. In Jwa was busy playing his games, oblivious to the fact that his cold reply just watered the seed in Dam Seo's heart to care and love again...  

Beth: Yes, Dam Seo makes it clear that she values fairness, after the unfairness of losing her father as a child, she doesn’t like to see people suffer who don’t deserve it.  Her cold heart melted a little at Gae Ddong’s chivalrous gesture.

Esther: I was confused by this next part with the Shaman woman and In Jwa, can you explain for me Beth and Mamacri?

Beth: Looks like the Shaman/ fortune teller woman is also a face reader.  She thinks that both In Jwa and the Prince share the same vision of a Tiger in their features.  So maybe that means they are both capable of taking the throne! Looks like he has a bigger threat in the Prince than he suspected….the Prince might be playing games of his own to get to the throne too!

Mamacri: Yes, this means we will see some political ‘swordfighting’ with words… both of them angling for the same throne. Two tigers is one tiger too many. They will be fierce opponents. In Jwa is totally in control of the prince's older brother and does not want any competition. But if the Shaman lady is right, then the Prince will be a big threat to In Jwa’s lust for power.

Esther: Ahhhh ,noo, I am crying here! He was  beaten 30 times with a paddle… so unfair! Our kind hearted boy, abused and hurt and caught out in the rain. He will probably get sick too.  

Mamacri: We can see our Gae Ddong is a man who knows how to suffer...he believes in sacrifices when the cause calls for it. He isn’t so polished or cunning, but he chose his sacrifice with his heart not his head. His gambler father never awakened his smart and calculating side, to keep him from being noticed… but his upbringing did give him an innate sense of fairness and kindness.   

Beth: Oh…. I was already crying and cringing with every swat of the paddle against our dear boy’s legs…. And then, when Dam Seo finds him outside, and hands him the coat, and then sees the blood dripping down onto his heels from the beating….. Oh my god…. The floodgate of tears just burst wide open…. Looks how brave and upbeat he’s trying to be, despite his injuries.  And he even hobbles after her to thrust the umbrella into her hands! (crying so hard!!) He’s so injured, but all he can think about is taking care of HER so she doesn’t get wet….. this boy….. sniffle sniffle !!!

Esther: Oh, Dam Seo can’t understand why he is sacrificing himself for her. She really just cut him to the quick—“No matter how hard you try, no one will acknowledge you…you will never escape being poor." Ohh, the tears in our boys eyes as the truth of it hits him…but he called after her and said he only needs one person to acknowledge him-- his future wife. Awww Dam Seo, he means you! He is so sweet and so cute, the way he is being honest about his feelings with those tears in his eyes.

Mamacri: It’s heartbreaking this scene...him having so much pain and yet he can't see the difference in class and statue. Back in those days it was very hard if not impossible to climb up the social ladder for a man...for a woman it was his mother who became queen even though she was of low birth. He acts from earnestly and from his genuine heart, and believes in the deepest sense what a marriage should be. I hate the thought of him losing this part of himself.  

Beth: Girls, I am a mess over here… oh, the way Gae Ddong just laid his vulnerable little heart bare like that…..I am crying so hard!  He can take the torture of the paddle, but how can he stand his heart breaking like this?

Esther: Now that he realizes how far-fetched his dream of marrying her is, he fell into a deep depression, banging his head on the wall even.  Awww. I cried a lot with him. Man Geum and Grandpa tried to calm him down, but Gae Ddong just ran out the door and threw himself down the well.  Lucky it was shallow!  He’s crying, “why am I Gae Ddong??” Awww, don’t do that please, we don’t care what name Man Geum gave you, we love you! Forget all those bad people and let your Eels hug you….huhuhuhu (Esther crying).

Mamacri: He came home after taking humiliation after humiliation, and the final blow was his love was too much for Gae Ddong who was only being very upfront and honest...he could not grasp the situation. His father and grandpa had no idea what happened to their happy go lucky boy. How shocking for them to see him jump in the well and feeling so sad and pitiful!  Crying and asking why he was dog poo...very heart-wrenching!

Beth: He had never really thought much about his name before I guess, but after being treated like dog poo by these nobles and worldly people, and even by the girl who has stolen his heart, all he can do is wonder… does his name merely reflect his position in the world? Or did his name create his position? Why was he named this? Why can’t he escape it? Ohhh it is so painful to watch him struggle with this heartache and feeling the unfair weight of this new world he’s in.

Esther: Hmmmm, well it looks like In Jwa held onto his connection with the Crown Prince, remember the one who he tricked to pick the white stone? Gosh, In Jwa really does plan a long time ahead…. 20 years, and just now the Prince introduces him to the King. In Jwa looks pretty pleased with himself, meeting with the King now. The Prince introduces him as his Baduk teacher (that’s the chess kind of game with the black and white stones), but haha, the King isn’t fooled one bit!

Mamacri: Yes...the Crown Prince looks so weak and simple. I love the manliness of King Sukjong here, quite the opposite of his son! Wow, the way he is dressed, and how he is sitting on his horse and looking down on that worm In Jwa.

Beth: Uh oh, Mamacri, you’re not going kabayaki over the manly King are you? Kkkkk

Mamacri: Not a chance, hahaha.

Esther: Whoa, the King know all about In Jwa’s past, and he remembers being responsible for killing his family, who were all political ministers he disagreed with. The King knows that means In Jwa will harbor a big vendetta.

Mamacri: Well the King is nobody's fool, but he goes along with In Jwa in his "game"...using this opportunity to tell him he has him in his sights ...just wondering about the mentioning of the years of ROOSTER, SNAKE AND DOG… thoughts about that, girls??

Beth: Well I think Gae Ddong/Dae Gil is born in the rooster year, so that means the Prince is the Dog year, which comes after rooster….. I guess maybe the Snake must be In Jwa? Interesting! I wonder if there is some meaning behind the personalities, or the luck associated with each of those.  I feel like the writers really take such care with every tiny detail, it must mean something!

Esther: Waahaha, King Sukjong sees right through the Baduk teacher disguise! He knows exactly what In Jwa wants-- his crown! He is so predictable.

Mamacri: Yep, the King is very smart… he caught it right away that In Jwa contradicted himself! First, In Jwa was making some serious political statements about the succession of the Crown prince and that the King can't keep the water from flowing it's natural way… but right after that when the King asked if he had designs on the throne, In Jwa faked some modesty and said  oh nooo, he was just his son's Baduk teacher, and really he has no interest in politics… certainly he didn’t want to be the monster of hundred eyes and one thousands ears... yeah right!  Lucky the King doesn’t buy it either. 

Beth: But, interesting that the King does hear him about about why he should step down and allow the Crown Prince to succeed him now.  The King didn’t deny that there was some validity in the reasoning, what with all the Soron-Noron faction problems. But…it didn’t make him happy to hear it, and he still doesn’t trust In Jwa any father than he could throw him.

Esther: He’s smart to feel like that, because the minute In Jwa was out of the King’s sight, he couldn’t hold in his true thoughts any longer. He wants the throne, and BAD. He wants to be the all-knowing, all-seeing monster with one hundred eyes and one thousand ears. He wants to be King, himself.

Esther: Wait, what? Lady Choi just slapped her son, the Prince, in front of everybody (ouch,that hurt!) because of his gambling and his womanizing. Ummmm isn’t it too late to punish him? He’s been doing it long enough to be famous for it!

Mamacri: first I didn't understand it, but after his mom slapped him, their thoughts clued us in that there is some kind of scheming going on. It might have looked like a normal punishment to the people watching in the courtyard, but they are playing at something. Being a second Prince, and one with such an enemy already in In Jwa, they must be plotting something to survive. They had to swallow a lot of things I think, hiding their intentions from In Jwa.  

Beth: And the thing worrying me, is that In Jwa, as always, seems to either know what they are planning, or at least have a very good suspicion.  I hope whatever their game is, they can keep him at bay a while longer!

Esther: Uhh, Man Geum had some money after all! He and Grandpa must have been secretly saving it. After feeling so terrible for his son’s misery about his name and his life, Man Geum just gave Gae Ddong that huge bag of money.  Now he can finally become a noble, starting with a few changes like new clothes and a hot bath. There’s just one probem—He’s acting shy and doesn’t want dad to give him a bath!  But Eels are on the edge of our seats, loving every shirtless second of it, kkkkkk.

Mamacri:  This is such happy scene! After all his hurt and embarrassment, our Gae Ddong finally sees how his life can change, and even better, he sees his father finally keep the big promises he always made. Aigooo, Eels, but first we get to watch him get ready for that long overdue hot bath...! Really this father and son moment, splashing the bath water at each other and laughing, is very precious.   

Beth: Loving a second glimpse of that skin…. but I am also really taken with the sweetness of this scene. You can really see the deep fatherly love that Man Geum feels for this boy, despite the conditions of his birth. This scene combined with what we now know of Gae Ddong’s personality shows that the former gambling addict really straightened up his life. He has raised a good, strong, and kind boy (even if he IS still a bit rash and irresponsible), and has done the best any father in his position could have. He has given his son a foundation of strong loyalty and love.

Esther: Oh ho ho, our boy wonders how he can have a noble name, and asked his father about it. Man Geum finally admits that he already has one but ....He must go get it back from the person who took it to pay a gambling debt….of course it’s Hong Mae! Oh that bad woman! She makes Man Geum pay 300 nyang to get it back for him. I don’t know how he had so much money saved, but I’m so glad, because now he is so proud , giving his genealogy to his son! Yessss! Gae Ddong is transformed in Baek Dae Gil. Wow, it is such a beautiful and distinctive name. I am even proud for him! Look how he can hold his head up high now!

Mamacri: Wowww, after the cleaning up, Gae Ddong looks a million bucks. Now he needs a name to go with it instead of the shameful name of Dog poo. Baek Man Geum is lucky enough to be able to retrieve the book after 20 years… and he’s so proud to give it to his son and tell him his real, and meaningful name. Gae Ddong can finally be a man of the world, with his new name, BAEK DAE GIL. Waaaa our boy is just swelling with pride and filled with happiness. He is the 13th generation of BAEK!

Beth: I love how full of pride they all are in this moment!  All their sacrifices through the last 20 years have culminated here! Ahh here I go crying again!  But at least this time it’s happy tears!!

Esther: Nooo! That horrible Hong Mae spilled the beans about the whole thing to In Jwa…. And now he knows that the young, dumb, puppy in love with Dam Seo is actually the baby he once tried to kill. He is the King’s dead Prince.  And can you believe it?? He just ordered Dam Seo, the girl of Dae Gil’s dreams, to KILL HIM!

Mamacri: Ooh that Hong Mae is really a low life! She would probably sell out her own mother for one nyang! Poor Dae Gil, already a target just because he got back his real name. He has no idea that by crossing this very thin line, he just stepped onto a battlefield. Dam Seo too, is realizing that things are a lot more complicated than she thought. Wonder what she thinks about being given with her first evil deed as pawn of In Jwa….

Beth: Well it seems to have cracked that icy mask she’s been wearing…. For an instant there, we saw her fear and maybe even horror….. but then she forced the “brave little girl getting her revenge” mask back on.

Esther: Dae Gil, Man Geum and Grandpa are drinking and laughing, and having so much fun celebrating the new status, but that awful Hong Mae came to interrupt the party. She demanded more money from Baek Man Geum, and our brave young Dae Gil….he tried to defend his family….but got stabbed in the gut by Hong Mae instead!  OMG, that evil evil woman, I can’t stop crying!

Beth: Oh!! And our Dae Gil… so shocked at first by her knife in his belly, but then his face changes, and we see a flash of the ice cold, serious Dae Gil we met at the very beginning—did you see how he grabbed the knife with his hand, even though it was cutting him, and wouldn’t let her pull it out?? She got so confused, it gave him the chance to punch her! HAHA!  Love his line about “You brought the knife out first, so you can’t resent me for this”…. then 'Bam!' punch to the head.

Mamacri: I know, at first we were having fun watching them all get drunk while celebrating. Especially laughing about how our dog poo is now the high and mighty, respectable Lord Dae Gil, the 13th generation the family….still, they are not at all refined yet  hahahaha...Oh wow, that Hong Mae had it coming to her...I don’t know if I would have stopped at a punch, lol.  But such a gentleman our Dae Gil is...he even warned her it was coming and that she couldn’t be mad since she was the one started it...such fairness, kkkkkk....he should have hit harder LOL.

Esther: Man Geum and Eyepatch helped Dae Gil get away from Hong Mae. And they almost had to carry him to the boat…. Oh our poor boy is hurt so bad! They didn’t  notice though, In Jwa and Dam Seo are watching them from the hill above the water. In Jwa, omg, he just ordered Dam Seo to shoot and kill Dae Gil!! But her hands shake and she can’t do it….whew, she refused. Yesss, that’s my girl, my future daughter-in-law, kkkkk. But then In Jwa ripped the bow out of her hands. He drew an arrow and shot it…. toward the boat…. Nooooooo!!


Mamacri: And isn’t Hong Mae is still chasing them down too? I wonder what her problem with them is, other than her own hurt pride. You know, In Jwa actually said something that gave me a good feeling—he said, "you can never kill Baek Dae Gil". Yes, Hong Mae... all you other thugs...let it go and leave our boy alone! In the meantime, the seed that Dae Gil planted in Dam Seo’s heart has started to bud…. In Jwa will have to do his own dirty work.

Beth: Poor Dae Gil, poor Dam Seo! She even drew the bow back, and looked down the arrow, lining it up with him…. but her hands are shaking so bad. Maybe because she is thinking about the past couple of days, and about this dumb but sweet boy who barged into her life, defended her and took brutal punishment for her without complaint… what reason does she have to kill him?? She might have been raised by In jwa, but she is her real father’s daughter, with a deep kindness, not deep coldness like In Jwa.

Esther: Ohhh nooo….. the arrow….. right into the middle of Man Geum’s back as he is trying to push the boat out in the water.  Oh it hit so hard too, it’s not good…. Man Geum changed so much, into a good father and a decent man… he raised Dae Gil and protected him so well… If this is the end for him, at least he can feel he did well at last in this life…. But oh, I’m so sad to see him go!

Mamacri: Killing the man that has been the only precious thing to Dae Gil-- In Jwa just guaranteed that the boy will come looking for him. But I’m sure like everything else, that’s all part of his evil master plan. I just wonder what exactly In Jwa is planning, how to use Dae Gil as another pawn to get himself on the throne…I’m betting he tells Dae Gil who his real parents are, and tries to make him hate them too…I guess we will just have to wait and see!

Esther: Dae Gil is just in so much pain, but then he looks up at his dad… and sees Man Geum coughing up blood and that arrow sticking through him. Ohhhh, noooo…. All Man Geum can do now is give his son his last advice: quit gambling so you don’t end up like me, and then he begs his son, please don’t avenge me. Crying………. it is soooo sad! Most times people in movies say “avenge me!” But Man Geum loves his son so much, he wants him to stay away from all these dangerous bad people… wants him to go far away and live quietly and happily…..

Mamacri: At first I wondered why Man Geum didn’t tell Dae Gil that In Jwa shot the arrow...but after rewatching it, you’re right. Man Geum only wanted to protect his son with all his might. He knew that Dae Gil would face the worst kind of evil if he followed the path of revenge. He only wants his son to be safe and protected. I wonder, can Dae Gil follow his father's advice? It seems that this trouble will follow him no matter how far he runs. I am worried it is unavoidable, and trouble will come looking for him.

Beth: Yes, whether it’s gambling or revenge, I can’t imagine how Dae Gil can escape from either one.  Ohhh… I am so glad I had the whole box of tissue…. I might have used most of it on this scene alone. It is incredible heartbreaking, partially because it is so well acted…. And also because we are Eels…. Even when our dear boy is acting, we can’t help but feel all his pain!

Esther: And now Hong Mae and her thugs are there at the water, but Dae Gil is just crying and clinging onto his dad, and won’t let him push the boat away. Man Geum even had to yell at Grandpa to crack Dae Gil over the head with the paddle, and knock him out. Poor Man Geum….. he just pushed the boat away with the last of his strength, but it saved his son. The boat floated out of Hong Mae’s reach. Ohhhhh….Dae Gil….. !!  He can only watch in a daze, and his father sinks into the water.  A tear slipped down our Dae Gil’s perfect cheek. Soo sad, I am in pain ….. cryyyyyyyyyying…….

Mamacri: This scene was so intense, so dramatic and very beautifully filmed...Great acting from our boy, and everyone else too! Dae Gil was totally losing it seeing his father in that state. To be confronted with that much evil and pain at once, it’s too shocking, he can only scream in despair and fear. So heart breaking, too, how the old men had to make the decision to cut the tie, because Dae Gil would never let go by himself. And that final heave as his father pushed the boat off shore, was also the final push to propel Dae Gil toward his fate... Aigooo my hearts aches for this young man…what worse trouble could he face before fate lets him rest?

Beth: Oh I hardly dare to ask that Mamacri…. I am so devastated for our boy… that tear running down his cheek as he watches his own father sink under the water, giving his life for his son’s… I can hardly even see the keyboard through my tears, to type. I know our Dae Gil must have many trials left to make him the cold gambler we saw at the beginning, but this will be the worst thing in his memory I think.

Esther: Well, that is the very sad end of the 4th episode. I will need another box of tissue before I can watch the next episode. Thanks so much to dear Mamacri for being here with us, and we will see you all next week for episode 5!


1 comment:

  1. I feel as though I've just watched this episode for the first time! Every emotion is exactly what I was feeling when I first saw it, and it's especially touching given that I now know what's happened in the episodes that followed this one. You must be writing as you're watching the episode for the first time - you're giving us such spontaneous reactions to each scene. Thanks for all of your hard work in giving this to us. :)


Thank you for sharing with us, Cri!