Money Flower Episode 21
Jang Kook Hwan (Lee Soon Jae) plays the recording of Boo Cheon’s conversation with his mother. He’s shocked when Boo Cheon states he isn’t a Kang, and has an unknown biological father.
Jang Boo Cheon (Jang Seung Jo) loads a shotgun and hides it under the bed.
Kang Pil Joo (Jang Hyuk) tells Jung Mal Ran (Lee Mi Sook) the eldest Jang grandson is alive…and it is him! Mal Ran stares at him in total shock. Then she laughs believing he’s joking. Pil Joo asks why her to explain why she couldn’t let his mother, brother, and him pay their respects at his father’s funeral. Why did she resort to murder? Realizing Pil Joo is serious, Mal Ran quickly puts the mask of control on and states his mother created the intolerable situation by refusing to disappear. Mal Ran was insulted they came to the funeral. She couldn’t exist with them alive. She ordered Chauffeur Oh to throw the youngest son (who couldn’t swim) into the lake knowing the oldest son (Pil Joo) would try to save him. Mal Ran asks how Pil Joo survived. She calls him a coward for saving himself and not his brother. Ouch!
She asks if he’ll kill her. Pil Joo puts his hand around her neck, squeezes and pushes her into the couch. He calmly tells her to beg for her life. Mal Ran pulls at his hand around her throat. Pil Joo tells her to drop the pretense. He squeezes her throat more and looks like he might just kill her. Then Pil Joo releases her. He says that he wouldn’t have let her live all this time, just to kill her at this moment. Pil Joo tells Mal Ran that she will experience what his family experienced in the water. His brother lacked the strength to hold onto his hand and Pil Joo ran out of air and was forced to the surface. He says he was a coward to live while his brother drowned. He states Mal Ran just experienced what it was like to gasp for breath and be near death.
Pil Joo offers Mal Ran the choice; remove Boo Cheon as chairman and disappear with her son or spend the remainder of her life in prison. Mal Ran counters that she can’t go to prison for his brother’s murder because the statue of limitations has expired. She declares she won’t hurt Boo Cheon. If Pil Joo won’t kill her, she’s going to leave. She stands to go, the red imprint on her neck visible. Mal Ran tells Pil Joo to find her if he has anything else to say. Pil Joo suggests that the poisoning of Chauffeur Oh would put her in prison. That gets Mal Ran’s attention. She asks if he has proof. Pil Joo says he has the fake suicide letter and the assassin paid to kill if Chauffeur Oh hadn’t drunk the poison. Pil Joo chuckles that detangling the money trail to pay the assassin was child’s play. He reminds her it is a capital offense. Mal Ran declares she won’t go to prison, the uniform is beneath her. Ha! Pil Joo retorts that Boo Cheon will step down as chairman because he’ll force him to. If Mal Ran doesn’t want to confess her sins, then so be it, she’ll be sporting the prison uniform soon enough. Mal Ran doesn’t believe it will go according to his plan. Pil Joo warns her not to interfere or Boo Cheon will find out that Chauffeur Oh is his biological father. Mal Ran gasps. Pil Joo says her biggest fear is the revelation of Boo Cheon’s birth secret. Pil Joo admits that Chauffeur Oh knew who he was. Mal Ran realizes that Pil Joo blackmailed him with Boo Cheon’s birth secret not reveal who Pil Joo was. Realizing she must buy time, Mal Ran sinks to her knees and begs Pil Joo for time to tell Boo Cheon. Pil Joo gives her 3 days to enact a plan to remove Boo Cheon as chairman.
Wow! Stellar scene. Jang Hyuk killed it. Lee Mi Sook hit every mark. Jang Hyuk is the master of nuance with face and slight gestures. Pil Joo and Mal Ran are both scorpions. Pil Joo had the power but Mal Ran still has her stingers and won’t go quietly. In this chess game, Pil Joo made a “check” move. What will Mal Ran’s counter move be?
Boo Cheon isn’t happy to be summoned to Pil Joo’s apartment. Pil Joo toys with a knife. He tells Boo Cheon to leave. Boo Cheon reminds Pil Joo he summed him. Pil Joo states seeing him was sufficient. Boo Cheon calls him a psycho. Pil Joo takes the knife and sticks it in the table. Boo Cheon sees he’s serious.
Another good scene. The depth of anger and resentment between these two characters that don’t fully openly loathe each other yet is clear.
Mal Ran tells Boo Cheon to come to her room. She tells him Pil Joo is the eldest Jang grandson. Of course, Boo Cheon already knows this and realizes that Pil Joo told her. Mal Ran realizes that Boo Cheon knew this bombshell before she told him. She shouts at him for keeping her in the dark. Boo Cheon declares he didn’t want her to have a heart attack from the shock of this. Mal Ran declares Pil Joo is a dog to be used and discarded, not a friend. Boo Cheon can’t believe his mother’s attitude. Mal Ran declares Pil Joo must be eliminated. Boo Cheon declares he’ll determine when Pil Joo is eliminated. Mal Ran doesn’t believe Pil Joo can reveal the birth secret. Boo Cheon says if he steps down as chairman, Yeo Cheon will take his place. They agree. Boo Cheon worries that Pil Joo has a personal grudge. Mal Ran lies that she doesn’t know the basis for Pil Joo’s grudge. Boo Cheon squeezes her hand and leaves.
Did we just witness Mal Ran’s self-preservation kick in by refusing to tell the truth to Boo Cheon? Of course, Boo Cheon is a loose cannon. No way Mal Ran would trust him with a secret that could send her to prison (and reveal she killed his bio-dad and Pil Joo’s brother).
Mal Ran stares at the imprints on her neck. She recalls her certainty that Pil Joo was an ally. She calls herself pathetic. Then she does an abrupt reset. She declares she’s done nothing wrong. Pil Joo is the one at fault.
Goodness, that is a delusional woman. It points to her pride and subsequent inability to admit she’s at fault. Declaring herself the victim conveniently paints Pil Joo as the villain.
Pil Joo lays on his bed and recalls Mo Hyun’s declaration that her lack of understanding of the pain he’d suffered as a child stopped her from asking him to leave with her, forcing her to leave without him.
Mal Ran tells her brother-in-law Sung Man that Pil Joo has revealed he is the illegitimate son of her late husband and therefore the eldest Jang grandson. He’s surprised and chuckles at Pil Joo’s moxy. Mal Ran says this isn’t good news. He reminds her that she dismissed his warning about Pil Joo. Mal Ran suggests they split the company equally between their sons. He counters with an 80/20 split favoring his son. He claims not to be greedy and revises the split to 60/40. Mal Ran agrees. She warns that when Chairman Jang learns Pil Joo’s birth secret, he might allow an illegitimate heir to run the company because of Pil Joo’s skills. That gets Sung Man’s attention.
I’m surprised that Mal Ran goes to Sung Man for help and that she accepts the 60/40 split. How does he have the upper hand? Is it because he has the power of being legitimate?
Yeo Cheon worries that Chairman Jang already knows Pil Joo’s birth secret. Sung Man agrees it is possible. He admits he once suspected Boo Cheon was illegitimate. He recalls his brother once saying Boo Cheon may not be his son. Sung Man says a DNA test years ago confirmed they were cousins, so his suspicions were put to rest. Sung Man tells his son to leave everything to him. He warns his son to be on his best behavior and wow the board members with his managerial skills. Sung Man asks his son to confirm he’ll make him Chairman. Yeo Cheon confirms this.
Pil Joo studies a report with a page on how to remove an employee. Na Mo Hyun (Park Se Young) drops by his office. She apologizes for coming without notice. She thanks him for the attorney reference. She asks about the foundation. Boo Cheon spies them talking from the hallway. Pil Joo wants to know why she’s interested. She wants to know if her father was bribed with foundation funds that he provided. She vows to prove this. She warns him she might find his illegal machinations at the end of the investigation. Boo Cheon interrupts their conversation. Mo Hyun states she had a foundation question. Answering her previous warning, Pil Joo encourages her to proceed.
Boo Cheon and Mo Hyun agree their lawyers are handling their divorce without incident. Boo Cheon informs her no newspaper articles will be written about their divorce. Mo Hyun asks when Chairman Jang and his mother will be informed. Boo Cheon states when the court ruling is final, he’ll inform them. He walks her to the elevator. He stares at her with longing. She looks down.
These moments are the only times I still eek out a small measure sympathy for Boo Cheon.
Boo Cheon strides into his office for the executive meeting. Assistant Woo informs him the company assets are being transferred to the holding company. Pil Joo provides a report that including removing employees. Boo Cheon scans it and tosses it on the table with disdain. He declares distaste for increasing the board’s power of management’s behavior. Yeo Cheon concurs. Carefully straightening the tossed report, Pil Joo reminds both Boo Cheon and Yeo Cheon that former Chairman Jang wants his recommendations followed. Assistant Woo concurs. Boo Cheon throws a water bottle to show his displeasure. He reminds Pil Joo and Assistant Woo that he has the power in this situation and his word is law. Assistant Woo agrees. Yeo Cheon agrees. Boo Cheon stares at Pil Joo expectantly. Pil Joo takes his own sweet time then with a face that says “you irk the heck out of me”, Pil Joo agrees. Boo Cheon enjoys his childish victory.
Yep, Boo Cheon deserves the upcoming downfall. I’m going to enjoy every moment.
Chairman Jang and Ms. Han join Mal Ran for lunch. Ms. Han is not happy to learn her lunch will be served in the kitchen. Ha! That never gets old! Yeo Cheon stops by to join them. He steals a toothbrush from Boo Cheon’s bathroom. Chairman Jang announces he’ll build a second house. Yeo Cheon is thrilled to be able to live at the compound.
Love that Boo Cheon’s birth secret is being explored by Yeo Cheon.
Mal Ran meets with Pil Joo and confirms she’ll do as he’s asked but needs more time. He agrees. She’s grateful. She once believed he looked at her with loyalty but she knows it was revenge. She claims this is breaking her heart. She wants a truce. Pil Joo counters that he’s filling a lawsuit to nullify Chairman Jang’s financial gifts to Boo Cheon from the last decade. Mal Ran is shocked. She wonders if Chairman Jang knows Boo Cheon’s birth secret. She can’t believe he’d take this action that could generate negative public opinion should it become known. Pil Joo doesn’t offer comforting words. He walks away. Mal Ran cries.
Pil Joo is practically glacier to Mal Ran. Is she hurt? Yes. Do I feel sorry for her? No. I believe Mal Ran cared for Pil Joo but the bottom line is that she viewed him as a tool to make Boo Cheon the chairman. The loss of the personal aspect of their relationship and the embarrassment of being duped pleases me.
Yeo Cheon and Sung Man read the DNA results that prove Boo Cheon is not a Jang. Sung Man wonders how best to tell his father. Chairman Jang calls.
Sung Man tell his father that he and his son are true Jangs while Mal Ran, Boo Cheon, and Pil Joo can be tossed aside. Chairman Jang declares protecting the company is all that matters. He refuses to share the details of his plan.
Boo Cheon tells Mo Hyun that Pil Joo is the eldest grandson. He’s surprised she already knew this. She admits the necklace tipped her off. Boo Cheon doesn’t like that she knew Pil Joo when she was a teenager. Mo Hyun shares she saved Pil Joo from drowning when she was a teenager. Boo Cheon realizes he sent Pil Joo to prison for the crime he committed while Mo Hyun saved Pil Joo from suicide triggered by his stepfather’s death while he was in prison. Boo Cheon asks for all the details. Mo Hyun shares that after she saved Pil Joo, he tried to reenter the water but she pulled him back. She admits Pil Joo’s mother, brother, and Pil Joo almost died or did die in that same lake. The truth dawns on Boo Cheon and he realizes that his mother tried to kill Pil Joo, his mother and brother. He mutters the reason for revenge is clear.
Pil Joo tells Chairman Jang to nullify the financial gifts to Boo Cheon from the last decade. Chairman Jang retorts that an illegitimate grandson will never run his company. Pil Joo counters that Chairman Jang forced his own son (and Pil Joo’s father) to marry a bank heiress. Chairman Jang retorts his son married the heiress for money just like Pil Joo’s pursuit of the company is about money. He chides Pil Joo to be honest that he is driven by money just like his father was.
The real chess game is between Chairman Jang and Pil Joo.
Boo Cheon takes Mo Hyun home. She tells him she no longer wants to see him. She’s divorcing him and doesn’t want to continue their relationship. Boo Cheon can’t alter her opinion. He watches her walk away from him (literally and figuratively).
Nope, don’t feel sorry for Boo Cheon. I’m glad Mo Hyun is freeing herself from him.
Pil Joo texts Boo Cheon to meet him.
Pil Joo receives a report from the assistant. He looks concerned.
Boo Cheon arrives at the meeting place but Pil Joo isn’t there. He finds the entrance to the secret room open. He enters. He sees it has been ransacked. The door shuts behind him. He’s locked in. He pounds on the door. He demands Pil Joo open the door. A fire starts.
Chairman Jang stares at his will. He cries knowing Boo Cheon is dying by his orders.
Boo Cheon can’t escape and succumbs to the smoke. Pil Joo bursts through the door and sees Boo Cheon on the floor. Pil Joo rushes to Boo Cheon and calls to him. Boo Cheon looks at him through bleary eyes.
Mal Ran’s humiliation at being duped was satisfying. She caved and went to Sung Man for support. He puts the screws to her then agreed to a 60/40 split. While I get that Mal Ran is upset at losing the faithful dog Pil Joo on multiple levels, I don’t care either. She made her bed, she must lie in it.
Boo Cheon was marked for death by Chairman Jang. He thought it was Pil Joo that trapped him and set the fire. But no, Chairman Jang is the biggest scorpion of all. I felt a moment of sympathy at Boo Cheon’s puppy dog eyes longing for Mo Hyun but I snapped out of it. She’s lucky to lose him. I wanted to smack Boo Cheon’s arrogant ways with Pil Joo. Boo Cheon won’t have power long. Just like Mal Ran, Boo Cheon made his bed, he must lie in it.
Mo Hyun talks too much. Mo Hyun doesn’t filter her knowledge and it bothers me. She overshared her past with Pil Joo when Boo Cheon questioned her. I’m not sure if that could hurt Pil Joo but I don’t like her willingness to tell all. I’m pleased she told Boo Cheon their relationship was done. She boldly warned Pil Joo that her investigation could uncover illegal foundation dealings that he orchestrated.
Pil Joo did not outmaneuver his Grandfather. Last episode Pil Joo got the better of Chairman Jang, but the tables were turned again this episode. Chairman Jang declared that Pil Joo would never have the ultimate power in his company because he was illegitimate and not worthy. Chairman Jang scored a direct hit when he equated Pil Joo’s quest for revenge and money to his son’s agreement to marry for money leaving Pil Joo’s mother, his brother and Pil Joo unprotected. Finally, the second half of Pil Joo’s conversation with Mal Ran did not disappoint. His loathing was evident. He effectively iced her when she implored him to be lenient. As we enter the final episodes Chairman Jang is the King of the chess board. Can Pil Joo capture him and declare checkmate?
Ranking the episodes (on a scale from 1-10) had me rank this episode as terrific. My episode ranking chart is below.