Love & Secret – E48

Yoon Yi turns to the dark side and schemes to sabotage Areum, even if it means that she is basically breaking her own employment contract and hurting her company.  Meanwhile, Seung Woon enjoys a couple of days of being a normal couple at work with Areum until Mr. Chun steps in to stop what he sees as a threat to his son’s future.  Thanks to the proactive efforts of Mr. Chun, the noble idiot is born.

THE RECAP

We begin with Yoon Yi falling into the dark side and copying Areum’s first draft of children’s clothes…

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Meanwhile, Seung Woon prances around his room, while stuffing his face with toast and reading supportive online comments about Mr. Han.

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In the morning, Mr. Chun complains about his stomach again and worries that the project has to succeed for Seung Woon to be fully accepted by the Board of Directors. He asks Secretary Jang if Seung Woon is still crushing on Areum and Secretary Jang politely answers that he doesn’t know about Seung Woon’s private life.

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As they’re speaking, Seung Woon jauntily walks to work. Seeing one of the many outdoor stalls on the sidewalk, he pauses to ask the seller for the ugliest hairpin that he has. The seller looks up in shock and Seung Woon beams that he’s buying it for an unbelievably pretty girl; if the pin makes her prettier, he doesn’t know what he’ll do.

Anna and Sungjun flirt with each other during the Team meeting as Anna talks about Korean – grown meat. Sungjun offers to buy her the most choicest cut, Korean-grown and Anna accepts. Of course, Louis complains that the two are flirting instead of working and Jiwoo seems to be the only one who is surprised by the two being an item.

Louis begins brainstorming and Areum suggests going with retro with metallic points. Seung Woon interrupts by calling Areum that there was a problem with her design and calling her in.

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When Areum walks in, Seung Woon is brooding over the designs. Areum nervously asks what is the problem with her designs and he tells her to figure it out herself.

Areum bends over to look and Seung Woon puts the pin in her hair. Areum gets up in surprise and Seung Woon explains that she liked the one that Anna bougth the other day. He proudly brags that he didn’t buy the same thing as Anna on purpose because he knows that girls don’t like wearing the same thing.

Areum tries to take it off and Seung Woon stops her. He tells her that it looks pretty and that he’s going to watch to see if she continues to wear it. When Areum asks if there’s anything wrong with her designs, he just smiles that she should have more confidence.

In the privacy of the design room, Areum stares at herself in the mirror.

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Meanwhile, the darkside courts Yoon Yi…As she still has a chance to do the right thing. Will she? Nope…She ends up falling to the dark side and embracing it.

Her secretary brings hers copy right cases as Yoon Yi had requested. She then posts a message from an anonymous account with the company email (?! – what the heck?) saying that she has the newest design and interested buyers should contact her.

At home, Mrs. Han worries about the money that she borrowed from Philip when her cellphone ringing interrupts her thoughts. She looks around for her cell phone and finds it in the fridge…

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She answers the call from Philip and they have another bonding session. Philip explains that the divorce has been finalized and he gave up everything for Areum. Mrs. Han reassures him that she will talk to Areum.

Mrs. Han then brings up the money. She tells him that she will try to pay it back as soon as she can. Philip does a wonderful job acting surprised and shocked that she would even think about paying it back. He states that he’s Tiffany’s father and they are family. He thinks of this as an opportunity to pay back some restitution for the hurt he caused Areum. Mrs. Han sighs that Areum just doesn’t recognize Philip’s true sincerity.

Oh the other hand, Mr. Han is still running for the best father as he watches Tiffany and contemplates his meeting with Philip. It’s unclear why he is contemplating the meeting…

Then we get a close call into the smaller family crisis! The police station calls Mrs. Han about the real estate fraud incident and Jinwoo picks up. Hearing that it’s about he real estate fraud, he tells them not to call again because he assumes that they have the wrong person.

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We turn to Jiwoo, who’s working so hard to stay in Jinwoo’s vicinity. She is eating at his barbecue restaurant waiting for him. Jinwoo sits down and tells her that he was looking for her – she was picked as the restaurant’s MVP of the month for having the highest attendance and got free movie tickets. Jiwoo almost embarrassingly obviously wonders who she should go with, since going to the theater alone would be so embarrassing. Jinwoo suggests Areum and Jiwoo quickly responds that Areum doesn’t like movies… When Jinwoo tries to answer that his sister does like movies, Jiwoo cuts him off wondering aloud who she can go with.

Our medical student can take the hint and offers to go with her. Happily, Jiwoo offers to buy dinner as well before realizing how forward she is being. Laughing, Jinwoo responds that he will buy dinner and she gives him her number.

Yoojin is still dealing with her daddy issues by writing her dad a letter from the point of view of her mom. It’s kind of cute how surprised she gets when Songcheol comes in to bring baked sweet potatoes.

An interlude at Seungho’s house as Soo Ah leaves her mother and son alone at home to visit Mr. Chun. Seungho asks for ramen, while his mother is gone and the two prance toward the kitchen singing, “follow, follow.” ^____^

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Unfortunately, our single father is crossing the lines of gender stereotypes. He raised his son alone and is willing to play the role traditionally held by Korean mothers. He calls Areum and Seung Woon into his office and directly yells at Areum about what she’s doing.

Seung Woon stops his father from yelling at Areum to declare that he loves Areum. Mr. Chun steps back into the conservative father role as he slaps Seung Woon.

Seung Woon takes this like a champ and tells his father that he will take a beating as long as it helps calm his father down. This just makes it worse and Mr. Chun hits him again. Areum jumps in to apologize repeatedly that she was wrong. She cries that she will stop.

Soo Ah, who had come into the office in the middle of this, snaps at Areum to stop and Seung Woon leads her out. He stays to talk to his father only to get yelled at to leave as well.

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Areum turns to the sanctuary of all corporate employees everywhere! Do you need a private space to sob? The emergency stairs!

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She cries here before going to meet Seung Woon outside. But, by this time Areum is determined to be the noble idiot. She tells Seung Woon not to make her life harder as she needs to focus on Tiffany and being someone Tiffany can be proud of and walks away. As she walks away she thinks to herself that she doesn’t want him hurt because of her. Again le sigh, the noble idiot has surfaced.

The wonderful day just gets better as Areum gets home to her naive mother trying to convince her that Philip has completely resolved his divorce. Areum tells her in exasperation that it’s not a simple problem, but her mom just whines that she needs to give Philip another try.

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Thankfully Daddy Han comes home to interrupt. He asks why her mom is yelling and lets Areum go inside to her room. He tries to tell Mrs. Han to give up on Philip and her mom voices her true feelings – she can’t give up on Philip! She thinks that Areum will not be able to find another guy like him!

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Cue tense divorce settlement negotiations! The two lawyers talk as the two parties quietly glare daggers at each other. Susie’s lawyer states that they are going to amend their divorce pleadings to include the fact that Philip had a baby approximately one year into the marriage. He implies that Philip could have cheated during the marriage; additionally, if there’s one baby, no one can be certain there are no others.

Philip interrupts to offer to settle and give up a part of his stock in the company. We learn a lot more about Susie’s real intentions as she exclaims angrily that he should give up all of his stock, not just a portion. She accuses him of stealing the stock and the company, which her father had built up. She stands up and declares that he doesn’t have a deal, before leaving.

After Susie leaves, Philip’s lawyer mentions that they are in a disadvantaged position after finding Tiffany. Philip asks if he needs to give in to all of Susie’s demands and refuses.

At home, Areum plays with Tiffany. When she picks up the pink shoes that Philip used to propose, she apologizes to Tiffany for not being able to make it work with Philip.

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At this point Philip chugs alcohol and drunk calls Areum. Philip asks her to come out and talk. Areum sighs and responds that she will meet him when he’s not drunk and hangs up as Philip yells that he’s dealing with all of this because of her.

Of course, when it rains it pours. Philip’s secretary comes to tell him that their investment bet lost. The Korean government chose Winner’s Group to handle the K Fashion Project.

MY TWO CENTS

Sigh, Yoon Yi’s character never fails to disappoint me.  So, she’s the head of the the company’s in house department and she has time to go out for drinks/lunches/dinner all the time and sabotage their company…This makes no sense.  Plus, it’s a shame that she is a self-made woman, who graduated with an MBA from Stanford and has to stoop to obsessing over marrying one man.

At least, if this is going to be Yoon Yi’s characters, please writers – hear my plea!  Make her character believable.  Let us empathize with her.  So far, she’s like the leaves falling on a tree that stands in the periphery of a park.  The couple sitting in the middle of the park could care less that the leaves are starting to fall, when the trees in the middle are still green and beautiful.

It feels like the show wants her to be the main antagonist and conflict.  However, they’re failing MISERABLY.  It’s okay because the show is carried on by the great chemistry between Areum and Seung Woon.  Additionally, the writing surrounding the other conflicts so far has been strong and believable.  For example, the writers did a wonderful job showing us why Areum chose Philip over Seung Woon because of her dad.  Yet, Yoon Yi’s character is severely underdeveloped.

There are many things that Yoon Yi could do, if the writers want us to hate her…Actions that would likely create a stronger emotional reaction from the viewers.  Just throwing ideas out there – if Yoon Yi decides to sabotage the company and make Seung Woon chose her, why not blackmail Mr. Chun?

Why not have Yoon Yi seduce the son of one of the more power Board of Directors or a younger Board of Director and threaten Seung Woon to choose – the company or herself.  The same effect could occur if we find out that there is a majority shareholder, who is a young male and magically attended the same business school as Yoon Yi.  The writers could easily write it in that he had a crush on her during school and she uses it to threaten either Philip or Mr. Chun so that she gets her way.  Then all of a sudden, there is a REAL conflict for Seung Woon.

For crying out loud, they can go the female power route.  Yoon Yi finds out that there has been an issue in the company due to one of the Board of Directors or management.  Since the company doesn’t want to lose the K Fashion project, they have to take care of this internally.  So Yoon Yi blackmails Seung Woon or his father with the choice- either let her go to the press/government about the regulation failure/breach of fiduciary duty/fraud issue or Seung Woon can marry her.  Voila!  Major conflict for Seung Woon and his father and Yoon Yi doesn’t even have to seduce anyone!

This is more like a stream of consciousness, but that’s what Yoon Yi’s character is missing.  Usually, the strength of the second female lead is measured by how much of an obstacle that she can create for the other female lead.  So far, Yoon Yi hasn’t created much other than random threats in the hallway.

I have to clarify.  I still love the show and I enjoyed this episode. It still definitely feels like a slice of life drama in that most conflicts are similar to ones that could occur in real life.  I just feel that Yoon Yi randomly downloading Areum’s file took the plot into the dramaqueen- dramaland.  If so, I think the drama should do it right and give us a reason to really be angry at Yoon Yi.

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