Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Oohlala Spouses Episode 6 Recap

  Yay, more back story! But also more conflict. This episode brings some major changes to the status quo, and adds new depth to our central conflict. Plus, Moo San has some crazy costumes.

  Wolhwa starts hypnotizing Soo Nam and Yeo Ok, but Soo Nam bolts upright and asks what if they didn't have a shared past? Wolhwa lectures him that he's already told them their connection is more than just in this life. Moo San appears and tells them to listen before Wolhwa orders her to leave. "I hate you! Hmpf!" Soo Nam ogles her the whole time.
  They start over and we go back to the Occupation welcoming ceremony. Reporter Soo Nam reaches a checkpoint and is searched after nodding at Conspirator Lee. He passes and then opens a secret compartment in his camera bag with a grenade in it and hands it off to Conspirator Lee. Viceroy Jin Goo is greeted by American Official John. Conspirator Lee throws the grenade and BOOM!

  Sayuri gets dressed and is confronted by a Japanese official, who asks if she dares betray her empire. She sits in her room after changing and reads their letter/declaration of love, telling Reporter Soo Nam she'll wait for him. She thinks back through their happy times together. Reporter Soo Nam runs in, holds her lifeless body and screams her name.

  Soo Nam reaches into the air with tears streaming down his cheeks. He remembers crying on the beach after setting Sayuri's body adrift. He walks past Ghost Sayuri, who turns and starts to follow. Suddenly, a child's voice yells "Daddy!" and he scoops a little girl up in his arms. Two little boys run up as well, and Ghost Sayuri counts them angrily. "Let's meet in the next life?! He has 3 kids and pretended to be a bachelor! I'll make sure I pay you back!" He waves at Wife Victoria, the final indignity for Ghost Sayuri. 

  Yeo Ok wakes up angry, and sees Soo Nam hypnotized and laughing to himself, as he remembers his lovely little family. Wolhwa and Moo San watch in the background as Yeo Ok slaps Soo Nam's shoulder and wakes him up. He asks why she roused him when things were just getting good. She asks why he's just the same in both incarnations, is betraying women a hobby of his.
  He hasn't heard a word she said and just focuses on the fact that he was an independence fighter. "We must be living like this thanks to me!" Yeo Ok continues sobbing, realizing she gave up her youth and her life for him, and for what? He thinks this is the reward for his great actions, and tries to grab her hand, but she beats him off. She tells him to hurry and figure out the answer. He asks Wolhwa what they need to know, and he just answers "Pay up." 
  Soo Nam is still enamored with his past life as a freedom fighter, but decides he needs to live a good life and fix his situation. He stops in front of a banner that says "All those with burdens, come to me," and comes home clutching a Bible and a cross. MIL sees and decides this is an insult to her, since she visits the Buddhist temple. But, she decided not to interfere before her daughter-in-law leaves.
  Yeo Ok puts on a cheerful face and greets everyone in the lobby, while worrying that she's been fired. She goes to her office and begs to be switched back so she can happily wash dishes all day. Victoria runs in with the news that there's a list in the hall of employees who have been fired and Soo Nam's name is on it. 
  Jin Goo discusses the firings with Chef Man Soo, saying that Hyun Woo is ruthless in cutting people. He must have an intelligence that's above average. But Man Soo says it must be below average, because letting people go with no warning opens him up for retaliation. 
  Soo Nam does not take the news well. He demands that Yeo Ok go and beg Hyun Woo for his job back, and tells her that the hotel world is small, and he won't be able to get another job anywhere else. She tells him that Hyun Woo isn't the type to be swayed by begging and he starts yelling at her. She hangs up. He calls and yells some more. She hangs up again, and he calls to yell even more. She hangs up again and he smashes some dishes and almost throws his phone when he remembers his new path in life.
  He crosses himself and calls back to apologize, saying he'll stop speaking to Yeo Ok like that.  She tells him again that begging won't work, and he starts cursing her out again. She hangs up and takes out the battery. 
  Phantom Yeo Ok shows up and reminds her that this is hard for Soo Nam, too. It's his job, after all. Yeo Ok refuses to beg that man who stole her youth, and says she's a woman with pride, you know. PYO laughs and says she's not a woman, she's a man. "But my essence is you." PYO reminds her that Soo Nam needs to work. Plus, if they lose his job, they won't be able to pay for Ki Chan's school tuition. 
  Yeo Ok walks to Hyun Woo's office, but hesitates outside. PYO reminds her that Hyun Woo won't recognize her and that she should help Soo Nam out just this once. PYO knocks on the door and peeks at Hyun Woo when Yeo Ok goes inside before disappearing. 
  Yeo Ok explains that she recently had an accident and didn't take medical leave because she was worried about the hotel. Her mistakes the last few days are the result of that accident. Hyun Woo says that resting after an accident isn't a waste, and she should rest fully. "Until when?" He finally tells her that he means permanently.
  She balls her fist, but PYO shows up again and tells her that she'll handle it for her. A baseball bat materializes in her hands and she swears at Hyun Woo as she repeatedly swings at (through) his head. "Do you feel better now?"
  Hyun Woo dismisses Yeo Ok but she tells him that this was her first job, and she always told herself to look on the guests as if they were her mother, her sister, her child. PYO mouths that this is getting weird. "Even when I had to come at dawn, I wanted to make sure our guests had proper nutrition and had slept well. I may not have shown affection for my wife, but I have always respected and loved our guests." PYO says she shouldn't have brought up the wife thing. 
  Hyun Woo says that he's heard a lot about Manager Go from John, but not taking medical leave after an accident is like having a car without a brake—it'll just cause accidents. They've already lost Chairman's business, and who knows how much more business Manager Go could cost the hotel. PYO asks him why he's changed so much. He's so cold and seems addicted to work, not like his old self at all.  
  Yeo Ok remembers back to a very cold day when Hyun Woo gave his coat to a shivering transient in the subway, even though he'd been freezing even with the coat. Yeo Ok returns to her office and decides that he must have changed because of "that wench" he dumped her for. She says that if he'd come back doing well, she'd be crying, but now. . . She forces out some laughs and says she's delighted he's miserable. She realizes she needs to pack up her things and then remembers Soo Nam.

  Soo Nam prays for help saving his job, but as his prayers continued unanswered he starts yelling at the heavens, before remembering not to do that and singing a hymn. He opens his Bible and reads a passage that says to repent. He starts listing his sins, like betraying Sayuri and Yeo Ok, partying with hostesses at clubs, and having dirty thoughts. MIL pokes her head in and then we hear a recording of chanting monks in the living room.
  He runs out and turns off the CD, and tells MIL that he's repenting right now because Chan's dad is probably going to lose his job. She decides she needs to pray even harder to Buddha, and he yells that he's been repenting already.
  Victoria comes to tell Yeo Ok that Chef Man Soo went to Hyun Woo to ask him to reverse the firing. Since Man Soo is the employee with the most tenure he'll accept. Victoria admits that she asked on oppa's behalf. Yeo Ok swears a bit, and Victoria rebukes her, saying it's this behavior that's causing the staff to mutter that oppa's acting different lately.
  Chef Man Soo begs for Manager Go to keep the job, but Hyun Woo insists that he hasn't been taking good care of things. He has good reasons for doing things his way, and his management style works for him, so Man Soo just needs to trust him. 
  Man Soo visits Yeo Ok and Victoria and admits his failure. Yeo Ok says "He's not the same Rabbit Poop I used to know." She covers by saying that he looks like rabbit poop. Man Soo suggests that they could talk to the president, but Yeo Ok points out that it would have already been cleared by him.

  That night, Soo Nam and Yeo Ok pray on their bed, and Yeo Ok asks why he decided to become Christian. He says he saw the banner, went inside, and realized it was a bookstore. He opened a Bible, and the words just stuck with him. If they pray all night, God will switch them back. Yeo Ok answers that they saw their past lives, and he needs to repent first. He lists a few of his sins and Yeo Ok calls him filthy. She looks at the camera and says men need to realize how filthy they are. 
  Outside on the roof, Wolhwa and Moo San are dressed as cat burglars (she literally has a cat mask and leopard-spotted stiletto boots and collar on). Wolhwa says that spousal feelings are a mixture of love and hate, and they need to learn that a marriage takes work. And all marriages are the result of relationships from past lives. 
  Hyun Woo presents himself to the hotel employees and tells them he's been sorting out the rotten apples from the barrel. Yeo Ok packs her things, and other employees turn in their uniforms. Hyun Woo asks for everyone to say yes to anything a hotel guest requests from here on out.
  As Yeo Ok heads through the lobby, Victoria runs up and promises to call. Yeo Ok snaps back that she doesn't want to hear from her and she should vacate her apartment. Victoria just laughs everything off and says when oppa's memories come back, he'll regret those words, so she won't listen. As she leaves, the bellhop puts her box in her car and tearfully bows his goodbye.
  Soo Nam sits at home drinking and Il Ran comes to criticize him. He yells at her and she thinks he's lost it. She leaves and he gets a call from some ahjumma about a leak in the villa bathroom. He yells that she has the wrong number, but she asks if it's No Yeo Ok. He realizes Yeo Ok's had a secret villa. He decides that since he lost his job, it's only fair that he take everything back.
  Soo Nam calls Lawyer Lee and takes him to the villa to inspect it. He also asks him to have everything changed back to his name. Lawyer Lee says he needs to be paid and asks for $650. Soo Nam holds up five fingers, and Lawyer Lee thinks he's agreeing to $550. Soo Nam says $50, and they settle on $60. Yeah, no wonder Lawyer Lee has no business. He's terrible at bargaining. 
  The ahjumma wonders if something's wrong with Yeo Ok's head, and Soo Nam says he has memory problems from a high fever. Outside, Lawyer Lee says they can't change the villa to Soo Nam's name, because you have to have documents and ID. Soo Nam points out that he can just use his temporary face and get all new documentation. Lawyer Lee realizes that's true, and gets smacked on the back of his head for his stupidity. 
  On the way back, Lawyer Lee gets a call telling him that the villa isn't in Yeo Ok's name—it's in Il Ran's. They realize that Yeo Ok bought it for Il Ran and left it to her even after the divorce. Soo Nam gets quiet and asks Lawyer Lee to keep this under wraps. Lawyer Lee says that Soo Nam has nothing on Yeo Ok for cleverness. 
  Soo Nam takes Yeo Ok out to a fancy restaurant and Yeo Ok wonders why he's being uncharacteristically nice. He answers that they're celebrating getting fired and keeps looking at her all lovey. He says that he's been thinking about what she always told him—if he showed her a fraction of the kindness he shows to hotel guests, she'd carry him on her back. He regrets never even telling her "You're working hard," and apologizes. She cries and he tells her he'll be nicer to her from now on. Even after they switch back. 

     YO: "Wake up from your dream. We're strangers now."
     SN: "We could come back together."
     YO: "Does that make sense? I saw you having an affair with my own eyes. How do you think I could be with you now? Besides, what will you do about that wench? Hmm?"
  Soo Nam yells at her about not being able to express his feelings, which is why they never talk. Yeo Ok walks out, with Soo Nam yelling after her. 

  The next morning, Soo Nam wakes up on the floor with a cunning plan. He shows up at the hotel in a crazy outfit that he probably thinks is properly feminine and demure: maroon knee-highs with a run, a long flowy pink skirt caught in his underwear, a top with a ridiculously huge bow at the collar, a white blazer, and a bow clip in his hair. He also keeps falling out of his heels and drags them along the floor so they don't fall off.
  He shows up late for his interview and snarls when he realizes it's with Jin Goo. He thinks to himself about their rivalry as Jin Goo rambles, and finally heaves a huge sigh. Jin Goo asks why he's sighing, but can't stop staring since his legs are wide apart. Soo Nam pushes his knees together and jokes about being worried about this interview. Jin Goo asks if he can be on time in the future and if he even knows what being a maid entails.

  Soo Nam rattles off his list: make every guest feel welcome, clean perfectly, and make it seem like each guest is the first guest to ever use that room. He leaves the room and Jin Goo does a spit-take when he notices the tucked-up skirt. Jin Goo decides he likes this ahjumma's unusual style, but the head maid says no.
  Victoria shows up at the house and lets herself in. She introduces herself to MIL and Il Ran. Yeo Ok comes out and is none too pleased.
  Soo Nam waits for Jin Goo and asks why he wasn't accepted. He grabs Jin Goo's hand and begs for a chance. Jin Goo thinks this ahjumma is coming on to him and, although flattered, says they can't do this here. He pushes Soo Nam, who slides along the floor and ends up at Hyun Woo's feet.
  Hahaha! What a way for them to meet after all these years/for the first time! I really can't wait to see how things turn out. And what a huge move for Victoria to make. She's practically presenting herself as the next wife, and MIL has already jumped onto that train. And poor Yeo Ok!
  I love how the more Soo Nam discovers about Yeo Ok, the more he realizes the value of what he had. Every time he thinks he has something on her, he's forced to confront the fact that she's not trying to trick him or take from him. In fact, her first priority has always been to take care of his family and make them happy. 
  But what I really love is that she's not going to just accept his small tokens of reconciliation. The more she grows, the more she realizes they may not be a good fit. And her selflessness makes Victoria the focus of any plans she has regarding Soo Nam. So even when Soo Nam feels a surge of affection for her and tries to make amends, she's not willing to just try to make things go back to how they were. Instead, she worries about how it will affect others, especially Victoria.
  I know that all the moralizing presented by Wolhwa is leading us to the conclusion that Yeo Ok and Soo Nam are meant to be together, even though their marriage is difficult, but I can't help but think that Yeo Ok deserves so much more in a relationship. She's worthy of something deeper and more fulfilling for her life. Because Soo Nam and Victoria have the bond they do, I don't think their marriage would have the same problems if they ended up together. But Soo Nam still has an Everest-sized mountain worth of grovelling to do for me to want him to be with Yeo Ok. Of course, Hyun Woo has almost as much, so he's not a clear favorite, either. 
  The major question raised in this episode: which betrayal is Soo Nam really paying for—his betrayal of Sayuri or his betrayal of his wife in his last life?

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