Our two couples break up. How do our foursome interact at work and play?
High Society Episode 11-12 Recap.
The setup: Four key characters comprise our young romance quadrangle: Rich unloved daughter Jang Yoon Ha (Uee, lead), poor Choi Joon Gi (Sung Joon, lead), rich chaebol Yoo Chang Soo (Park Hyung Sik, 2nd lead), poor part-timer Lee Ji Yi (Lim Ji Yeon, 2nd lead). Rich Yoon Ha and poor Joon Gi are dating. Rich chaebol Chang Soo and poor Ji Yi are dating. Rock solid Yoon Ha and Joon Gi are at a cross roads as she’s found out that he knew who she was when they began dating. Chang Soo and Ji Yi are at a cross road too. Will they take their relationship to the next level?
Yoon Ha comes from a dysfunctional rich family – cold Dad (Jang Won Sik, played by Yun Ju Sang), grieving and drinking Mom (Min Hye Soo, played by Ko Du Shim), presumed dead kind big brother (Jang Gyeong Joon, played by Lee Sang Woo), power hungry big sister (Jang Ye Won, played by Yoon Ji Hye) and bitchy big sister (Jang So Hyun, played by Yoo So Young).
Nutshell Summary Episodes 11-12:
Yoon Ha confronts Joon Gi. She asks if he know who she was before they started dating. Joon Gi confirms he knew. They both make good points in a multi-step confrontation. She calls him calculating. He agrees. She wonders if his mother was part of the plan. He denies it much to her relief. She asks his motive. He states to marry her and marry well. She gets angry. He counters that she desperately wanted to be in love to separate from her family so she assumed his politeness meant he liked her. Hurt, she cannot deny the truth of it but she clearly states she loved him, not the idea of him. Ouch, now he knows he’s torpedoed real love. Excellent confrontation. Both parties were brutally honest. I like this couple.
Chang Soo and Ji Yi dance around their next move. The frog and the scorpion story is told by Chang Soo. He tells Ji Yi that he does not want to become a scorpion to her. That’s sweet and realistic. She notes that in the end both the frog and scorpion were hurt not only the scorpion. That’s smart and realistic. He pulls her to the bed. As they stare into each other’s eyes, she asks that he not say he is sorry for this later. They melt together. I like this couple.
Both Yoon Ha and Joon Gi mourn the loss of their relationship. They love each other. Can Yoon Ha accept his initial calculated actions? She decides revenge is needed…”I’ll step on you.” This could be interesting.
Sporting a new hairstyle, Yoon Ha asks Chang Soo why he didn’t tell her about Joon Gi’s intentions. He says it was not his business to interfere, plus would she have believed him? Yoon Ha points out that Joon Gi used Chang Soo. He agrees and notes he used Joon Gi as well. As he leaves he tells her if she wants revenge against Joon Gi, she’ll have to be smart. She assures him she’s up to the task. I like her steely reserve. The actress Uee’s lack of emotion works well in this scenario.
Chang Soo learns the joys eating from a food cart from Ji Yi. They are cute together.
Chang Soo’s mother gets photos of her son’s lunch date with Ji Yi. She is not happy as Chang Soo lied to her that it was over with Ji Yi.
Yoon Ha makes Joon Gi wait for a meeting for several hours, then has her secretary cancel the meeting. He comes to her office. He wants to know if she loved him. She can’t deny it. Then, he assumes, she must love him now. And if she loves him, even though her head cannot accept his calculations, her heart must. She asks, why be honest? He hesitates, then tells her “I love you”. They stare at each other. He pulls away. Yoon Ha tells Joon Gi to stay away. He tells her sister hired him. He took the job. “Life is more important than love.” She counters “watch how I torment you.” He counters “I look forward to it.”
Joon Gi tells Chang Soo he has accepted a job with Yoon Ha’s sister. They reach an understanding. Not exactly friends but not enemies either.
Yoon Ha and Ji Yi bond while drinking soju by the river. Yoon Ha admits her encounter with Joon Gi stirred her heart, she still cares for him. Ji Yi says that she understands Joon Gi’s need to focus on life versus love. She wonders what will become over her relationship with Chang Soo.
When Chang Soo returns home, his mother is waiting. She has pictures of his lunch with Ji Yi.
Dysfunctional family – Big sister Ye Won hire Joon Gi to work for her. Dad tells Mom is she divorces him she will lose status and her position in society. Does he care about Mom? Middle sister taunts Yoon Ha that Joon Gi used her.
Ji Yi’s landlord tries to throw her out. Yoon Ha interjects herself. With the threat of a lawsuit, the landlord to back down. Ji Yi tells Yoon Ha that worrying about money isn’t fear but reality. She tells her that dating Chang Soo has been fantasy but she needs to return to reality.
Boldly Ji Yi calls Chang Soo’s mother and asks to meet. Chang Soo’s mother agrees. She muses that Ji Yi is daring.
Back to reality…Ji Yi texts Chang Soo that they must return to reality. He knows that means their dating days are over. It hurts him, but he knows Joon Gi was right, he must overcome himself, his elitism, if dating Ji Yi were to have a point.
So both our couples have broken up.
Yoon Ha taps Chang Soo for help with a business issue. Ye Won taps Joon Gi for help with the same business issue. Joon Gi delivers a solution to Ye Won first.
No surprise but it is awkward when Yoon Ha and Joon Gi see each other at work. Ji Yi, friends with both, finds it is awkward for her too. Joon Gi admits to Yoon Ha he was the informant for the article about her working part-time at the grocery store. Not surprised, she asks his motivations. He wanted the best for her. It pushed her into the family business and stopped her moving out of her home. He offers her a bit of advice…if someone agrees with everything she says, they likely have an objective. True friends will challenge each other. She asks why he is giving her advice. Why else, he asks. That’s code for because I love you.
Ji Yi meets Chang Soo’s mother. She lets Chang Soo’s mother know she realizes she created the issue with her landlord. She confirms that she and Chang Soo have broken up. Chang Soo’s mother muses that Chang Soo says the same thing. In a clever bit of word play, Ji Yi tells Chang’s Soo mother not to meet with her anymore or she’ll start to like her. That surprises Chang Soo’s mother. Ji Yi continues…if she likes her, then she won’t be able to break up with Chang Soo. Impressed at Ji Yi’s moxy, Chang Soo’s mother is further surprised when Ji Yi says she’s charming. Ji Yi thanks her and makes a gracious exit. Chang Soo’s mother is duly impressed. Terrific scene!
Continued awkward moments at work…Yoon Ha elects to eat alone rather than join Joon Gi and Ji Yi.
Yoon Ha comments that Ji Yi is friendly with Joon Gi. Ji Yi counters she has no reason not to be friendly with Joon Gi. Yoon Ha wonders if Ji Yi is bothered that Joon Gi lied about his intentions. Ji Yi counters that Yoon Ha lied about her background to her. Yoon Ha retorts she has genuine feelings for Ji Yi. Her friend notes that Joon Gi has genuine feelings about Yoon Ha. She grumbles that Joon Gi sullied their first kiss by murky intentions. Ji Yi calls her a relationship virgin. Most people don’t have genuine feelings at the first kiss, they are exploring possibilities. Ji Yi says that she broke up with Chang Soo. Yoon Ha is surprised at this news. Ji Yi urges her to be open minded when it comes to Joon Gi. Nice conversation. I like that Ji Yi tells Yoon Ha the unvarnished truth.
After a meeting with Ye Won, Chang Soo waits in Yoon Ha’s office to talk to her. Ji Yi drops a report off and they are both surprised to see each other. Chang Soo tells her it was tacky to break up with a text. Ji Yi counters his mother told her he was going to break up with her anyway. Ji Yi surprises Chang Soo when she initiated the meeting with his mother. She wonders why his mother inserts herself into their adult relationship. Ji Yi states since their relationship is over, they should wish each other well and move on. She wishes him well. He stares at her and says nothing. As Ji Yi turns to leave, Yoon Ha returns to her office. Yoon Ha suggests tea for the three of them. Ji Yi leaves, obviously upset. Chang Soo is also affected.
Later at the elevator, Yoon Ha and Chang Soo run into Ji Yi. Yoon Ha suggests dinner but Ji Yi declines. The air is thick with tension. As the elevators door shut, Ji Yi and Chang Soo stare at each other. Ji Yi remembers that Chang Soo said he might become a scorpion and hurt her.
In the lobby, Joon Gi run into Yoon Ha and Chang Soo. The air is thick with tension. Chang Soo scolds him to limit his use of connections from his old job. They part.
In the elevator, Joon Gi thinks about Yoon Ha. When he exits he finds Ji Yi crying. He realizes she saw Chang Soo. He offers to buy her a drink.
Yoon Ha calls Ji Yi and invites her to join them. Ji Yi declines. Yoon Ha frets the Ji Yi is upset. She asks Chang Soo to go with her to find Ji Yi.
Joon Gi walks a tipsy Ji Yi home. She shares the frog/scorpion story. As she teeters, Joon Gi holds her steady. Chang Soo and Yoon Ha approach. Chang Soo wants to know what Ji Yi is doing. Ji Yi says it’s obvious, Joon Gi is taking her home. Yoon Ha tells Chang Soo they should leave. Irritated that Yoon Ha told Chang Soo to leave with her, Ji Yi grabs Joon Gi’s arm and says they should leave too. Chang Soo grabs Ji Yi’s wrist and tells her they need to talk. Ji Yi protests that she does not want to talk to him. Joon Gi grabs Chang Soo’s hand. He tells Chang Soo to stop, that Ji Yi does not want to talk. Chang Soo and Joon Gi glare and stare. Ji Yi stares at the men. Yoon Ha stares at the men.
Dysfunctional family – Yoon Ha and big sister Ye Won dance around wrong doings at the company and suspicions that presumed dead big brother had about Ye Won. Yoon Ha reveals she has a flash drive from big brother. Mom wonders if her prison of a marriage is the best place for her or should she be bold and divorce? Yoon Ha impresses her father when she admits that business is harder than she thought. She tells him she’s no longer dating “that man”. That pleases her father too. At his mistress’s house, father suffers a heart attack. Mom goes to the hospital where she finds the weeping mistress. She throws her out of the room. Mom is stunned to see her husband lying almost lifeless in a hospital bed.
1. Episode 11 centered on the reveal of Joon Gi’s intentions. I like that Chang Soo and Ji Yi were not judgmental of his actions which is much more interesting.
* The confrontation between Yoon Ha and Joon Gi where Joon Gi’s intentions were revealed was excellent. She deftly questioned him. He was forthright even when it did not flatter her or him. My favorite point Joon Gi made was that Yoon Ha wanted to be in love and he happened to be in the right place at the right time. To her credit Yoon Ha admitted this, but was angry that he discounted her love because of it.
* Chang Soo and Ji Yi did take their relationship to the next level. I like this couple. They both clearly believe long term isn’t going to happen. But their hearts are pulled to each other. They want to be together even if it cannot be long term. Good utilization of the frog/scorpion story. My favorite moment was when Ji Yi told Chang Soo never to say he was sorry for being with her.
* I like Chang Soo’s mother. Yes, she works to separate Ji Yi and Chang Soo but she does it in an upfront way. Chang Soo lied to her, she retaliated by kicking Ji Yi out of her home. She’s smart. The best way to hurt Chang Soo is to hurt Ji Yi. She cares about her son BUT mother knows best.
* Yoon Ha wants to “step on” Joon Gi. Good luck with that. In the business world, Joon Gi has advantages that newbie Yoon Ha does not have. Yoon Ha’s almost impassive nature makes scenes work with Joon Gi who has a similar impassive nature. They are not vibrant but they work as a couple.
3. Episode 12 was dealt with residual feelings from the broken relationships. This episode was a bit slower paced but interesting none the less.
* The confrontation between Joon Gi and Chang Soo. We end the episode with Chang Soo trying to force a conversation with Ji Yi. Chang Soo won’t have his friend bullied and intervenes. Male posturing ensues which I love. I can’t believe the show would try and have our broken pairings really try and have relationships. I like that the broken relationships are also causing schisms in the friendships. Well done writer.
* The breakup between Chang Soo and Ji Yi. Break up via text may have been tacky per Chang Soo but I thought it was perfect. Ji Yi’s 3rd meeting with Chang Soo’s mother was awesome. She couldn’t help but be impressed with Ji Yi’s moxy. I also like that Ji Yi is upset about the break up. She’s hurt and crying openly. Everyone else is putting on a stoic face.
* Yoon Ha and Joon Gi are cool but not full blown enemies. I like that while Yoon Ha wants to beat Joon Gi she’s not going all vengeance which can be tiring. She admitted the working world is tough. She did not believe Joon Gi when he told her he cares for her (why should she believe him, just coming off the shock that he lied throughout their relationship). She got a bit a scolding from Ji Yi who noted she forgave Yoon Ha for hiding her identity. Yoon Ha is not using Chang Soo to make Joon Gi jealous.
* All in all, the writer is doing a fine job creating plot points for our foursome that lets everyone feel the pain of their mutual break ups but also mines the friendships. Nicely done!
* The third song of the OST has been released. Check out the ballad “I Can’t Live Without You” by Kim Ju Na either via the link or the embedded video below: