Finally an episode that was worth watching. Hye Won has a game plan. She starts playing the game soft and progresses to hardball. Unfortunately her choices may leave Sun Jae behind in the dust. Will that be her ultimate choice? Does Sun Jae even have a choice?
Episode 15 begins on a high note, Hye Won is on the back of Sun Jae’s moped buzzing around town. They are gloriously happy, all smiles these two. She asks “Where are we going”? Sun Jae returns “To get caught”! Hye Won returns “That’s great”!
They stroll the streets hand in hand. Hye Won says people expect them to be in a motel. Sun Jae tells her what they are doing now is hotter. Sun Jae makes up a cute story how people walking by them won’t know that she’s a fashion designer and he is a rice delivery man that fell in love the moment they saw each other. Hye Won wonders if he’s scared of the obstacles they’ll now face. He simply says let’s walk together because it is something he’s always wanted to do with her. Hye Won happily says “You must really love me” and Sun Jae definitively says “Yes”. Sun Jae sweetly tells her “It will all be fine. Just be my girl”. Ok, that totally melts my heart.
He kisses her passionately. He’s so wise to enjoy life’s moments. Hye Won and Sun Jae go their separate ways each telling the other to do their part. He watches the taxi whisk her away wondering if this was their last carefree moment.
Cut to the chairman’s son-in-law who listens to his detective that they have 2 teams in pursuit. The chairman’s wife enters the room and the son-in-law tells her the teams don’t think they can catch them. She is nonplussed at this bad news. Son-in-law meets with the chairman and his wife urging them to disclose everything to him. They both decline. The chairman tells the son-in-law to protect my daughter (your wife). At her secret apartment the chairman’s daughter (the son-in-law’s wife) is smacking her boyfriend who has grown tired of her drama and suggests they break up. Knock, knock. Who’s there? Legal. Legal who? Legal husband telling his wife to control her behavior FOR ONCE. “We are in a war with Hye Won. What you do can give her ammunition against us.” Volatile as ever, she is angry that her husband does not care that she has a lover. She yells “Did you EVER like me?” I believe the answer to that is no.
Super spy Hye Won dons all black in the dead of night, packs up the laptop computers and heads to the river to dump the evidence. Has Operation “Get the Upper Hand on the Evil Quartet” (Chairman, Chairman’s wife, Chairman’s Daughter, Chairman’s Son-in-Law) just started?
The next morning her husband joins her for breakfast miffed that she has not turned herself in. Why would she want to do that? she counters. Ding, dong, it is the prosecutor’s team to search and seize anything they want in their house. I must say I do NOT feel sorry one bit for the husband as he watches the house get tossed. He tells the prosecution team he has NOTHING to do with Hye Won’s illegal activities, grabs his wife’s purse and hands it to them. What a wimp this man is! Meanwhile, Sun Jae hides her phone in his apartment. Hye Won borrows the maid’s phone to text her secretary to go along with what the higher ups ask her to do, that there will be some temporary changes. Hye Won instructs her secretary to secure the documentation against the Chairman’s wife and daughter separately.
Wimp husband seeks counsel from the dean who tells Hye Won’s husband to file for divorce THEN charge Hye Won with adultery.
At home, Hye Won retrieves the secret flash drive (filled with evidence no doubt) that the prosecution team did NOT find.
Sun Jae practices with the quintet. Their dean enters the practice room and tells Sun Jae considering what is going on he shouldn’t be practicing with them. That worries him. Sun Jae tries to call Hye Won but gets no answer. As he’s about to enter the elevator, Hye Won exits. He is relieved to see her.
They head to the practice room where the quintet students are honored that she’s come to listen to them.
Meanwhile Secretary Wang enters Hye Won’s office like the cat that swallowed the canary. She directs Hye Won’s secretary to clear out Hye Won’s desk, she has taken over the Director’s position. Notices are posted around school that Hye Won has been removed from the Director’s position and Secretary Wang is now Director.
After practice Sun Jae walks Hye Won to her car letting her know where he hid her phone in his apartment. She agrees to wait there until he gets home.
Hye Won makes herself home in his apartment. When he comes home she is napping on his bed. He says he came home for supper. She apologizes that she ate all the rice. He says he’ll go downstairs and get supper there.
As Sun Jae exits the apartment, Hye Won’s husband shows up with police officers to arrest them for adultery. Hye Won yells to her husband this is a cheap shot.
At the police station, Hye Won’s husband tries to get them to admit to the affair but only gets stony silence. The detective tells him to simmer down, he must ask the questions. The detective asks Hye Won’s husband to describe what he saw, which was nothing. The detective tells him this falls under the civil rules of divorce as grounds of spousal misconduct. For criminal adultery there must be evidence of the affair (couple caught in the act). Hye Won stops the detective asking to call her lawyer. Who does she call? The chairman’s son-in-law. Oh no, don’t do it. You can see Sun Jae has the same reaction I do. Sun Jae recommends they wait it out, there is no evidence. But Hye Won AGAIN does not listen to him. She frustrates me and when discounts him. A cute moment when Sun Jae switches places with Hye Won putting himself in the middle of the three of them.
Hye Won speaks with her lawyer, the Chairman’s son-in-law. He states this arrest happened because her husband is naive (another way of saying stupid). He suggests that she give him the dirt on the chairman and his wife. Hye Won recommends that chairman’s wife is added to the list of those to be investigated. He states they are now a team. Hye Won does not agree to that, stating she only wants help in today’s matter. The son-in-law promises to take care of it. He holds out his hand, she pauses and then shakes his hand. Did she just make a deal with the devil? Sun Jae sees their handshake. He isn’t happy either.
Hye Won’s secretary, friend, and the chairman’s daughter gather at the police station. The son-in-law suggests the police close the adultery complaint for lack of evidence. Hye Won’s husband says he filed for divorce before coming to the police to have Hye Won arrested for adultery. The son-in-law says he can continue with the divorce. Hye Won must be thrilled the divorce process has started so she will be rid of her loser husband. The chairman’s daughter is upset. She came to see an arrest and no one is getting thrown in jail. She wanted to see their love get shattered into a millions pieces but that is not happening either. As everyone leaves the police station, Hye Won’s husband explains to the son-in-law he was only doing what the dean told him to do. The chairman’s daughter notes that he must be embarrassed that his plan to catch his wife in adultery was a complete failure. That was a good zinger (she has several good lines this episode).
Sun Jae wants to know what kind of deal Hye Won made with the son-in-law, why did she shake his hand? She tells him she needed power. Sun Jae sagely notes then she’s back in the same mess she just left, driven by power, money and status. Sun Jae tells Hye Won the son-in-law will want something from her for today’s help, he did not do this out of kindness.
Outside the police station, the son-in-law tells everyone to go home. The chairman’s daughter bluntly states she’s disappointed as she thought she’d see a great love end in jail. Hye Won counters that she’ll throw a party to celebrate her divorce. Sun Jae boldly hugs Hye Won IN FRONT OF EVERYONE. That kid has moxy! Hye Won softly tells him she knows she’s strange but bear with her. The chairman’s daughter is stunned to see such open affection. The son-in-law drags her away.
At home Hye Won’s husband talks to his sister who gives him an idea. He tells Hye Won that he’ll give her a clean divorce IF she compensates him with money and alimony for his pain and suffering. What a whiny weasel he is! Hye Won agrees within the confines of what she can afford. Cash limits anger him and tells her if she gave him ALL the money, it wouldn’t be enough. Hye Won flatly states his expensive tastes have drained their bank account every year of their marriage. He tells her he’ll garnish her future earnings. He declares she is in a liaison with the chairman’s son-in-law. Hye Won rejects that statement and leaves the room.
Sun Jae stubs his finger playing the piano. Does that have a symbolic meaning?
The evil quartet meet. The son-in-law tells the chairman and his wife that as he forewarned, they are now in trouble as Hye Won has evidence against them. Son-in-law tells the chairman the evidence will make a suspended sentence difficult to achieve now. He notes the chairman’s wife is also at risk for prosecution. The chairman’s daughter wryly notes that Hye Won will now want the chairman’s wife’s position. The son-in-law states Hye Won wants to be reinstated as director. The chairman’s wife vows she’s not going to be Hye Won’s puppet and decides to resign. The chairman’s daughter agrees that would be the best thing to do (another zinger from her). The chairman’s daughter asks her husband who’s side is he on, the chairman’s or Hye Won’s?
The next day at work Secretary Wang is retrieving her now worthless name plate from Hye Won’s desk. Hye Won and her secretary enter the office. Secretary Wang pretends she was making sure the desk was fully stocked. She slinks back to her desk. Hye Won and her secretary enjoy the moment. I do too.
Next moment to enjoy…Madam Baek flees the country under Hye Won’s advice much to the fury of the chairman’s wife. Guilt is implied when she flees.
Next moment to enjoy…articles implicating the chairman’s wife and Madam Baek appear on-line.
While Hye Won is triumphant, Sun Jae is miserable. The old Hye Won is back, bewitched by power and status. The sliver of happiness, the dream of a new life with Hye Won has slipped through his fingers. Tears of sadness at this loss come.
Hye Won meets with the chairman’s son-in-law who now asks for payment for his help yesterday. Hye Won needs to share information with him and divide the spoils. Hye Won side steps saying it is too early for this, he only helped her out of a bad situation yesterday, they are not partners now. The son-in-law presses to divide the spoils, he will take the school foundation and she will retain the arts foundation. He notes his sister is a teacher at the school. Hye Won realizes he wants his sister to be the next chancellor. Hye Won muses, we just shook hands yesterday and now it is war? The son-in-law confirms this. Hye Won waits a beat then replies she will not divide the school as he wishes. Hye Won, you just made an enemy. Will it bite you in the end?
* Finally all the chess pieces of this series converge to form an interesting episode. It was a long wait.
* I feel sorry for Sun Jae. He is wise beyond his years but he is not valued by Hye Won. It is a role reversal. Usually the man ignores the woman.
* Sun Jae is in the clutches of his unwavering love for Hye Won. He values her over everything else, so she has the power.
* Hye Won is back in the clutches of power and status. During the first half of the episode, she seemed free from those chains. You could see both of them lighten up and enjoy the moment. They were happy not miserable. It was lovely but fleeting.
* Another annoying production choice I noticed this episode. Many scenes were backlit making our characters in the foreground dark and difficult for the camera to focus on.
* Rhetorical question, is there ANYTHING redeeming about Hye Won’s husband?
One more episode to go and Secret Love Affair is done…