It looks like the writers read my last recap/thoughts and gave me everything I asked. Who knew I was so influential? 😀
I think this is the episode that can be fondly thought of as: The One Where Nana Redeemed Herself.
Nana and Yoon Sung the City Hunter
Episode 9 left us with Nana’s discovery of Yoon Sung’s alternate identity. Isn’t it funny how Yoon Sung has three names: Lee Yoon Sung, John Lee and City Hunter and none of these were given to him by his parents? My dream is for his mother to give him a name that only she and Nana will call him by.
The first time they meet is while she’s at her part-time job. He stands outside the cafe psyching himself that he is only coming to see her as part of his mission but the fact that he has to even do that is telling enough, isn’t it? And while he’s wasting time in line and gets tapped by an impatient customer, I like how Nana overreacts because she’s only thinking of his gunshot wound. She’s like a lioness with her cub, isn’t she? 😀
He wants to know about Young Joo’s dad and she tells him the whole sordid tale. Then she shows her support for the City Hunter by mentioning that she wishes he exposes him just like he did the other rotten politicians. I like that she’s making it clear that she supports him even if he doesn’t get it. But as she talks about his other role, her mind goes back to the news report that Lee had been murdered and she just has to confirm for herself that the City Hunter is not a murderer. Yoon Sung tries to brush off her question but in his response, she manages to find the answer she needs to hear.
The next time they meet is at judo practice and once again, all she can do is think of his well being. The girl who’d never once hesitated to throw him over her shoulder in a fit of anger can no longer bear to hurt him now that she knows how much pain (both mental and physical) he’s in. I’ve now begun to wonder if we’ll ever see her use her signature judo move on him again. I kind of hope we do because it would mean it’s not just angst from here till the end.
At Judo, she’d subtly tried to communicate with him by holding his bullet necklace and making some leading statements but Yoon Sung’s wall was up and impenetrable. So now, she goes to his favorite spot with his favorite coffee and tries to talk to him. How does one say, “I know you’re going through a lot right now and since I care a lot about you, I want to be there for you?” Especially to someone with a thick suit of armor on? So she sits next to him and speaks nervously, looking for things to say before deciding on teaching him her special coffee recipe. But Yoon Sung wants to stick to his plan of keeping her safe and away from him so he says nasty things to hurt her.
He then tries to shame her by asking why she’s throwing herself at him, hoping this will get her mad and make her leave but instead, she confesses her feelings to him. He’s stunned and she continues, explaining that despite his nasty attitude, she likes him. He tries to recycle the excuses that he’d once used to gain her trust for the opposite effect, such as her not being his type, but it doesn’t have the desired effect because she’s heard it all before and despite that, she still likes him. All I can say is that this is one brave girl.
He walks away, saying that they should become strangers now and with tears in her eyes, she refuses to allow herself to feel any regret, praising herself for the confession as she notes that there’s nothing wrong with liking someone (your faux father-in-law will disagree, Missy).
This was definitely my second favorite scene of the episode. I like that she was open and honest. Unlike Yoon Sung, she doesn’t play games and is very forthright with her feelings. Loved it!
Yoon Sung’s hard exterior melts once he’s back in his office and he once again looks at the gift bag containing the purse he was never able to give her. I wonder when that bag will get to its rightful owner. His interactions with Ki Joon always crack me up. Off topic but I’m kind of tired of that girl always throwing our poor Ki Joon around. I know it’s for comic relief but I think it’s old now. Time to move on to something new.
Topic back on. At home, it’s dinner time and the ajusshi-mom just happens to have made his favorite dish – the same one Nana had made for him on their last night together. The same one he’d rejected like a royal asshole. So of course he thinks about her. Which means that he just has to see her. So he asks her to meet him.
A happy Nana rushes off to meet him – not before she stops by a drugstore to use some of their sample make-up to spruce up a bit. I’m a little surprised by her reaction given how cold he’d just been to her. But the heart often leads the head.
So when they finally meet, does he greet her with a kiss? Of course not. Instead, he greets her with another girl and asks her to drive them to a hotel. Why, thanks for that, Yoon Sung ssi!
So he sits in the backseat of the car with his floozy (the nicest word I could think of) and it’s so obvious his entire performance is for her benefit. The drive in the car serves two purposes – he gets to see her and he also gets to hurt her. The first part I understand… the second, not so much because there was no indication that she’d contacted him since her confession so even if he tells himself that he’s doing it for her benefit, he’s doing it entirely for his because he misses her. Well, that’s my interpretation.
But all the rude comments he makes about her combined with making out with the girl just makes him so transparent that Nana has to put an end to the show. So she stops the car and like the bad ass chick that we all hoped she was, pulls the girl out of the car and puts her in a taxi. Yay for Nana!
Then it’s time to deal with the bigger dummy of the two. He starts off trying to act like the wronged party, wondering if she’s jealous but she straightens him out. No, she can’t be jealous of such a cheap woman. Yes, she likes him but she never tried to force her feelings on him. It’s fine if he insists on pushing her away but he must do a better job at it by using a better woman.
So here’s my question: is this where Sae Hee comes in? I’m quite conflicted on this if it is. While I’ve been hoping for a little vet-hunter action… which sounds so wrong yet so right when put that way… now that it seems like a possibility, I no longer want it. Since Nana’s feelings for him are now out in the open, I don’t want him to stomp on them for her own benefit or whatever bullshit he has to believe to make himself feel better. In fact, I just need this to stop because this aspect of his personality is annoying!
But of course, the Yoon Sung we all love shows up when he’s alone in his room where he pleads with Nana not to like him. Why doesn’t he try pleading with himself to stop liking her so that he can gauge how easy it might be?
Yoon Sung, Nana and his mother
Le sigh. What can I say about Yoon Sung’s mother? As we’ve seen in previous episodes, the poor woman has been looking sickly so in episode 10, she visits the doctor who diagnoses her with the Korean drama staple illness of leukemia. On hearing this, does she burst into tears and ask God what she did to deserve it? No. She accepts the news bravely and asks the doctor if it’s hereditary. I am sure that in the past 28 years, no day has gone by without her thinking of her son.
She gets permission to return home and when she does, unwraps a treasure of hers – one of Yoon Sung’s baby clothes and cries that she only lives to see him again. And now that she’s been diagnosed with a terminal illness, doesn’t it feel like he’s being stolen from her yet again? As she lies down and cries, longing for her child, telling him how much she misses him, all I can think is, “DAMN YOU, JIN PYO!” I am still in denial, hoping that a twist will reveal that he didn’t kill those cops but this I just can’t forgive. Despite how he might justify his act, stealing her son has kept this woman in hell for 28 years.
Earlier on, Nana had found the photo of Yoon Sung’s mom that had been conveniently left at her apartment and smartly put two and two together. So later on, when she goes to visit her, it’s no longer just because she misses her mom and that the ajumma has always been nice to her, but also for Yoon Sung’s benefit. In prior episodes, it was heavily hinted that Nana would be a bridge between these two and I’m glad that they writers have begun to move this plot along.
So when the ajumma collapses in her presence, there’s only one person to call. Earlier on, she’d returned the photo to Yoon Sung without any questions but then again, none were needed. Plus he was being an ass. And when she calls him about her and he tries to act like the spoiled brat he’s being lately, asking why it should matter to him that the ajumma is sick, she pointedly reminds him that she’s his mother. I think Nana is just the right woman to whip our City Hunter into shape.
Even though his heart must be in turmoil, Yoon Sung shows up at the hospital with an air of disinterest till the doctor shocks him with his mother’s diagnosis. I think this is the third time Nana has played the comforting role in matters related to his mother. Even though their relationship is probably in the worst state it’s ever been, the feelings on both sides have deepened and it is only now that Yoon Sung finally tells her the full story as he knows it. But Nana has really become perceptive of Yoon Sung and can see his true feelings behind his mask of anger so she tells him what he needs to hear and kicks his butt into doing the right thing. It’s especially poignant that she reminds him that despite it all, he still has a mother – something that she now lacks. So he agrees to foot her medical bills.
Yoon Sung’s mom, who’s now in the best room of the hospital feels undeserving of the treatment she’s receiving and her son, who only knows how to express his true feelings through anger yells her into accepting his help. The “Sung” in his name might prove to be a clue (her husband had mentioned that “Sung” was a family name) and his treatment of her might be another one. While she laid in bed unconscious, is there a possibility that she might have heard Nana refer to him as her son?
I was a little skeptical that he’d take his mother’s photo to Nana’s place since it does have some sensitive information on it but the scene of him frantically searching for it shows that he probably looks at it every few days. Mother longs for her stolen son and despite thinking he’d been abandoned, son yearns for his mother. I hope these two can reunite really soon.
The City Hunter, The Prosecutor and his Evil Dad (+ the other Evil Dad)
So there are parallels here. Both justice fighters have “Evil Dads” and both protect them in some way (I’m guessing Young Joo does know of his father’s offense) but I also find parallels with Young Joo and Jin Pyo as they are both zealots and hypocrites.
In this episode, Yoon Sung questioned his father’s motives for the revenge. Is it survivor’s guilt? And he also told him that murdering the innocent policemen doesn’t make him an avenger but a murderer. One thing I wonder is if after this is all over, Yoon Sung will try to make his father pay for his crimes. I’m still in major denial about Jin Pyo killing those policemen because his response to his son’s accusation was something like, “You knew this about me,” which is similar to what Yoon Sung has said in the past to Nana regarding his late night rendezvous. But one thing I both love and hate about Jin Pyo is that he’s so single-minded. Yoon Sung tried to talk him off the ledge -so to speak- of his revenge mission and he just replied with, “Don’t stand in my way or you might die too.” lol. I can’t help but love this man.
As the story unfolds, I think Jin Pyo’s role in this drama is to show one extreme – the lengths a person can go for revenge so that it highlights the difference in Yoon Sung’s approach. In a way, he’s like the measuring stick. So when he meets him and warns him not to take the blood test, it makes perfect sense but then we also get to see the humanity in Yoon Sung because he sacrifices himself for the sake of someone else.
Not to say that Yoon Sung doesn’t still try to protect himself because he still doesn’t let his blood stay at the crime lab but he was willing to take that risk for the greater good. My only thing is that now that they know of his mother, won’t they dig into her past, find out who her husband was and link her to the October 1983 incident?
So our dear prosecutor will go to all lengths to uphold the law and take down the City Hunter even though as far as everyone can see, that while his methods are illegal, their goals are the same. Even though he’s been delivering criminals at this doorstep and making his job more effective, what the prosecutor cares about most is that he breaks into places and tries to kidnap high ranking officials. So just like Jin Pyo, he’s also very single-minded and refuses to see the big picture. Which might be why his personal life is in shambles.
So he chases after the City Hunter with zeal and tries to stop him even though catching him potentially comes at the cost of having other unscrupulous politicians continue with their dubious deeds. He’s now spending so much time and effort on Yoon Sung – tracing his movement, following him, trying to get some blood and I wonder if perhaps it could be better spent on more harmful criminals.
In the scene in front of Jin Pyo’s place, I liked that Yoon Sung’s excuse of meeting Steve Lee to talk about investments was so lame that in a way, it was like him giving the prosecutor the finger and saying, “Catch me if you can!” The prosecutor is such a blowhard that I just want to see him lose even if he’s on the right side of the law.
But there’s something else at work here and that is the simple fact that despite their broken relationship, Young Joo appears to be covering up his father’s crime. So not only is he protecting his father, he is/was also committing a crime by obstructing justice and withholding evidence and that makes him a hypocrite.
Jin Pyo is the same way because while he wants to punish those who betrayed him, he continues to betray his friend and son by not coming clean about Yoon Sung’s kidnapping. In this episode, he tries to use the lie that his mother had abandoned him to stop him from taking the blood test. This is not a black and white situation because he’s also trying to protect Yoon Sung but every time he uses that lie feels like yet another betrayal. I both love and hate that this drama has so many murky situations.
Yoon Sung and his Ajusshi-Mom
I think theirs is the definition of unconditional love. Sometimes, he’s like a mom to him, other times, like a wife. I loved how he teased him about Nana because Yoon Sung wouldn’t let him drink that beverage.
But then it was time to come clean about his involvement in turning Nana’s father from a victim into a perpetrator. Even though it hurt, he was happy to finally get it off his chest. I wonder how long he’d been wishing for that confrontation. And of course, there was no judgment from Yoon Sung. I wish I am wrong, but I envision him as someone who will end up being caught in the crossfire around episode 19. I do hope he survives so that he can become Nana and Yoon Sung’s child’s god
motherfather but I won’t be surprised if he ends up meeting his deceased wife before the show is through.
And of course, after seeing his mother sick, he was the one person that Yoon Sung could properly express all his anger and frustration to. Again, he’s the listening ear who just offers his support. I just love him for the role he plays in our hero’s life.
For a while, many had been wondering when Nana would stop being a hindrance and begin to actually help Yoon Sung and she finally showed her worth. Other than all the other emotional stuff that’s already been mentioned, she showed her quick thinking when she kept the prosecutor’s investigator from following Yoon Sung and of course, later on when she helped hide the City Hunter at the crime lab. But then that begs the question: how did she know for a fact that he was going to the crime lab AND how come she was in the right place at the right time? Does one need some kind of clearance even if it’s just as simple as an ID to get in there? And if so, has she begun to leave a trail as well? And if she does, will her aunt protect her?
What would an episode of City Hunter be without some fight scenes? I enjoyed the fight in the basement between Yoon Sung and his father’s man but I wonder if they really needed to take it down there. If I were Yoon Sung, I wouldn’t really expect that guy to try to beat me up in public like that so I would have told him to take a hike.
Also the final scene of jumping down the different floors of the building… lol. Well, what can I say? He must be one hell of a confident dude to think he wouldn’t end up dead. At least Batman has a whole bunch of tools in his belt. Don’t try this at home, folks!
Another good episode! I must say that Nana really was the highlight of this episode and I’m so glad that the writers listened to my suggestions. 😀 So what’s next on my wishlist? I’m quite satisfied right now so I’m ready for whatever the writers want to give to me.
Oh… I just thought of one. I would like to see Nana tend to one of his wounds… and run her finger over one of his old scars.
Till next time!