Things are starting to get a move on in the land of Rascal Sons as we (re)introduce new characters and conflicts. Trust me, we’re just getting started.
Hyun-ki + In-oak
In-oak wakes up the next morning and freaks out when she finds Hyun-ki on her floor, wearing nothing but his boxers. They go through a pretty hilarious scramble of clothes and apologies as they light out of the piano academy back to their respective homes. He tries to talk to her on several occasions, but she avoids him like the plague, until he finally just asks her what he did wrong to merit her avoidance. She explains that she’s just embarrassed after having seen him nearly naked, and her prompting finally unleashes memories of the pretty darned hilarious – and totes embarrassing – escapade from the night he got drunk. He apologizes profusely, and the tension finally dissipates between the two, leaving them even more comfortable with one another than before the whole incident.
Hyun-ki learns that a close friend/role model only has a few months left to live (he has cancer), and he decides to send flowers. Since In-oak is officially opening her piano academy as well, he orders two floral arrangements. (In Korea, people often send floral arrangements or other plants as a gift for grand openings.) Uuunfortunately, the card intended for Hyun-ki’s mentor gets sent to In-oak instead. The contents? “I’m not very good at expressing myself through words, so I just send my heart… I love you.” Hahahahhaaa. In-oak, of course, flips out, and she just gets angrier when she learns Da-bin went to Ah-ram’s house to play – without her knowledge.
Min-ki + Shin-young + Jin
Shin-young moves her stuff into Min-ki’s studio, much to his discomfort. She gets up on a chair to put books on the shelf and of course nearly falls over, forcing Min-ki to catch her. Not just once, but twice. Girlfriend, you’re just asking for it, going up there in three-inch sling-backs. Seriously. Mama Kang, unfortunately, witnesses it all, and her face understandably darkens.
Min-ki goes to meet Jin, who is undergoing intense physical therapy (to get out of his wheelchair, I presume). He urges his friend to tell Shin-young the truth about his physical therapy, but Jin doesn’t want to burden his fiancé. And pinkblossom goes ARGH.
Seung-ki + Mi-rim + Song-hee
Seung-ki begs Mi-rim to keep up the pretense of a marriage in front of his mom, but she’s not willing to put up with his antics any longer. Song-hee, who has set her sights on Mr. Playboy, shows up at the golf range and demands he pay for 70% of the hospital bills. Mi-rim, whose heart was softening towards Seung-ki, goes to the golf range but sees her hubby and Song-hee together. It ain’t what it seems, but this guy has no credit built, and Mi-rim turns away, angry and disappointed for having thought Seung-ki was worthy of her efforts.
Hyun-ki meets up with Mi-rim, begging her to give his brother one last chance. He tells her that she was like his own sister, and even if she decides to divorce Seung-ki, he won’t give up on her. Awww. Alas, Song-hee ain’t gonna be helping this couple get back together: She pays for private golf lessons from Seung-ki, and all I can say is that he’s finally met his match.
Mi-rim decides to start working at a sunbae’s restaurant, and she asks her almost-ex-hubby to watch Bo-ram during her shift. He goes to see her at work and sees her suffering indignities at the hands of the customers. He pulls the shmexy hubby act, dragging her out and yelling at her to quit the job, but his sudden show of concern is about as effective as a band-aid on a severed limb. Yuck, that was gross. Where did that imagery come from? I think Taken 2 is still whirling in my head…
Anyhoo, Mi-rim accidentally spills the beans to her mother-in-law about the divorce, which results in a wholly unexpected – and panic-inducing – return to Korea by Mama Yoo. Dun dun duuuun!
Mama Yoo + Mi-rim + Seung-ki + Song-hee
Mama Yoo cleans up house like no other, cutting up Seung-ki’s credit cards, locking away his phone (in a chest, no less!), and putting him under house arrest. Papa Yoo gets demoted to a mere employee at the real estate office, with an allowance of $300 a month. LOL. She drags Seung-ki to go meet Mi-rim, but Mi-rim hides and lies as she tries to avoid Mama Yoo. That lasts all of a couple days, because Mama Yoo hunts her down, and my heart just breaks at how much the older woman loves Mi-rim like her own daughter – she even remembers how Mi-rim likes her food. Augh, relationships like these always get to me. Mama Yoo understands better than anyone else how Mi-rim is feeling, and she asks the young woman for one more chance to be her mom. (The term used is what a woman’s mom is called – the opposite of “mother-in-law” aka the woman’s husband’s mom.) Determined to hold onto the girl she loves as her own, Mama Yoo buys a small office space for Mi-rim to open a ramen shop. Yuuum.
Seung-ki continues in his immature ways, and I can’t help but mutter “Like father, like son” when I see him and Papa Yoo together. Seriously. Song-hee (another crazy) goes to the golf range looking for Seung-ki, but he’s under house arrest, so she goes looking for him at Min-ki’s studio. Gotta give her credit for remembering the darndest things. Seung-ki reluctantly meets up with Song-hee, who stalks him in an attempt to find out where he lives. LOL.
Hyun-ki + In-oak
In-oak returns the flowers and card to Hyun-ki, who realizes that the card was sent mistakenly and explains the error to her. She apologizes for always acting like a crazy woman, and Hyun-ki hesitantly tells her that Ah-ram wants to take piano lessons from her. Heheheee. These two are so cute.
Ah-ram’s teacher asks to meet with Hyun-ki, and he learns that the little girl is sensitive these days, easily getting angry at her friends and only talking to Da-bin. Poor Hyun-ki sits in his car dejectedly when In-oak sees him and asks if he’s okay, if everything is okay with Ah-ram. Just as he’s about to talk to her, she has to leave (to give a piano lesson), and Hyun-ki’s face falls again. Alas, she didn’t forget about him, and she invites him for coffee at her piano academy. So cute! After hearing about Ah-ram’s behavior, In-oak suggests that Hyun-ki have a party for his daughter and use it as an opportunity to memorize all her friends’ names. Then, he can ask Ah-ram specific questions about her friends each day. So smart! In-oak uses her own name as an example, and thus Hyun-ki finally learns her name. For those confused: It’s not uncommon in Korea for people, especially adults, to not know one another’s names. You usually call people by their titles or their relationship to you. For example, Hyun-ki always calls In-oak “Dabin’s mother,” and she always calls him “Ah-ram’s father” or “Dr. Yoo.”
While still talking about the party idea, Hyun-ki gets a call from Mama Yoo, and he tells her he’s at his office. He’d completely forgotten about his date with his mom, and he promises to meet her downstairs immediately. Buuuut. Mama Yoo is standing in his office. LOLOL. And, of course, as she comes out of his office, he comes out of In-oak’s academy. Hahahaaa. Mama Yoo is already starting to size up In-oak and find her unsatisfactory…
Min-ki + Shin-young
Min-ki goes to his studio to work and opens a password-protected file – it’s the story of his unrequited love for Shin-young. She comes in just then, and he hastily closes the document, telling her it’s nothing important. While looking through various resort pictures, she tells him that the wedding date is set and waxes lyrical about the honeymoon plans. Just torture him, why don’t you?
Min-ki gets sick, and Jin asks Shin-young to email him a copy of Min-ki’s latest novel – the romance author has a deadline to meet, but he’s too sick to take care of things himself. Shin-young dutifully sends the email, then remembers the secret document and tries to open it. She tries Min-ki’s, then Jin’s, and finally her birthday as the password, and the file finally opens with her birthday. Yikes! Dooon’t go theeeere! Alas, stupid Shin-young is ignoring my words of wisdom, and she reads the last chapter of the file – and recognizes her own words. Oh noes… Min-ki, of course, chooses that moment to call out Shin-young’s name in his fevered state, and when she comes to his bedside, he gently caresses her face before pulling her to him. Yikes yikes yikes!
Shin-young sits in the studio, numbly trying to process everything that just went down, and he groggily sits up in bed. She asks him if the secret file is about her, and he answers, “It’s about me. It’s about the woman I love.” Eeeeeeeek! (And in case you couldn’t interpret that, it was not a squeal of happiness. Just so you know. 😉 )
Min-ki + Shin-young
Shin-young tells Min-ki that they should pretend like nothing ever happened – she didn’t see or hear anything. Surprisingly, Min-ki tries to argue with her, but she takes her leave. Oh my gollies. She quits the freelance job Min-ki had hooked her up with, and a concerned Jin asks his best friend what’s going on. Min-ki, of course, can’t answer that question, and Jin just guilt-trips him further by telling him he’d trust him with his life. He trusts Min-ki with Shin-young. Just putting it out there in case the dagger isn’t properly inserted in your heart, ya know.
Shin-young goes to meet Min-ki that night and tells him to keep his distance from her and Jin for the time being. She explains that it’s all her fault – she knew of his feelings but feigned ignorance out of fear that she’d lose him (who was like an older brother to her). Min-ki tells her not to worry, and he tries to argue that she’s not at fault. “Forget any thoughts that you’re a sinner. I’m the one who loved you, and I’m the one who betrayed Jin.” Uuunfortunately, Mama Kang hears it all and burns in anger, then goes to Hyun-ki’s office to bawl her eyes out. So tangled, this web of relationships.
Seung-ki + Song-hee + Mama Yoo + Mi-rim
Seung-ki tries to escape his house arrest, and Song-hee manipulates the situation to get him in her car. She takes him to her favorite place (a rooftop) and says she came here when her mom and brother died. The sweet moment lasts all of two seconds as she then cheerily explains that she always wanted to bring her boyfriend here, too. LOL. They end up going to eat together, but Song-hee knows the laws of economics: There ain’t no thing as a free lunch. She makes Seung-ki assist her in her driving lesson(?), and thus ensnares him more firmly in her grasp.
Mama Yoo meets with Mi-rim and tells her she got an apartment and restaurant for her. Mi-rim is hesitant to accept such generosity, but Mama Yoo explains that she will always be her mom – even if she decides to marry someone else. Stop yankin’ my heartstrings!
Hyun-ki + In-oak
Hyun-ki plans a pizza party for Ah-ram, but Mama Kang meets him and tells him that she heard Min-ki telling Shin-young he loved her. That sends Hyun-ki into shock, and he totally forgets about the party, leaving poor Ah-ram waiting with her friends at school. Da-bin was one of the invited friends, and he tells In-oak that Ah-ram’s dad never showed up. Cut to a bawling Ah-ram and helpless Hyun-ki, who can’t apologize enough to his little daughter. In-oak consoles the little girl and impulsively invites her to the amusement park. (In-oak got tickets from her father-in-law, who was a bit hurt that she didn’t immediately suggest he go with her and Da-bin. Man oh man, when he finds out Hyun-ki and Ah-ram went in his stead… hehehee.) Hyun-ki, Ah-ram, In-oak, and Da-bin spend an adooorable time together at the amusement park, and they even take pictures like a perfect nuclear family. Mama Yoo, though, isn’t too pleased when she sees the ‘family’ photo, so she calls up a friend…
In-oak is headed to her academy when she sees Hyun-ki and her face brightens. Arch-nemesis-to-be shows up just then in her sparkling Porsche, and she throws herself at Hyun-ki. He’s taken aback and awkwardly greets her – though not unkindly, for she’s obviously a hoobae he knows well – but his face registers shock when he sees In-oak watching them, equally in shock…
I never cease to marvel at how different dramas can be from one another. I’m not even talking about plots or even genres – just the feel, the mood, the tone, the vibe. Rascal Sons moves at a slower pace than the ridonkulously high-tempo My Daughter Seo-young, but the former has its own character and unique world, and I’m content to accept it for what it is.
Seung-ki is a contradiction of many, maaany sorts, and I think he doesn’t really know who he is either. Some of it is inherently part of his character, and some of it is due to Seo In-guk’s limitations as an actor. Yes, I wubbed him like no other in Answer Me 1997, but he’s still very green, and it shows in this marathon of a drama populated by veeeery experienced actors and actresses. But perhaps that is why I’m looking forward to lots and lots of growth – both on the acting front and in terms of character. I’m curious to see how his relationship with Song-hee will change, not to mention his relationship with Mi-rim – because his wife ain’t goin’ away anytime soon, and that can only mean he’s either gonna get back together with her, or they’re gonna have a very interesting family of sister-like-ex-wife. We’ll see.
Min-ki’s character is one of the most frustrating, both on a personal level and story-wise as well. Ryu Soo-young can do so much better, and he deserves so much better. Maybe I’m just biased against Shin-young and the actress (see, I don’t even remember her name off the top of my head), but I just don’t see the love that his character seems to possess. I feel nada. Zero, zippo, zilch. And what was up with that “I knew of your feelings but I didn’t want to lose you” line? Mama Kang is obviously gonna break up this marriage, so it’ll be interesting to see how Shin-young’s heart turns to Min-ki. You’d better not pull a Hyun-tae + In-hye (Can’t Live Without You). I will seek revenge like no other if you do.
Hyun-ki has probably had the most story so far, and I really do love him and In-oak. It’s amazing how comfortable they’ve gotten with one another, and how much they’ve both been moved out of their comfort zones. It looks like Mama Yoo is gonna be playing the age-old opposing mother-in-law, and Wang Bit-na’s Se-ra will be the spoiler. A jealous In-oak is gonna be hilarious, and a Hyun-ki desperately trying to allay In-oak’s fears is gonna be even funnier. I can’t wait. And just to make sure I play nice, I’m gonna keep in mind that Wang Bit-na is making this extended(?) cameo out of loyalty to Ryu Soo-young, with whom she’s a part of the same agency. Remember, pinkblossom, remember, she’s not actually evil.
I know Episodes 9-10 already aired this past weekend, but I haven’t gotten to them yet – I’m still much more behind on Can’t Live Without You and My Daughter Seo-young, and I have another trip all of next week, so it may take a little bit of time for me to write the mini-caps for Eps 9-10. I’m still chugging along like Thomas the Tank Engine, though, so I thank you for your kind understanding and patience! 😀